How do Bengals compare to Patriots? Quite well, says Brandon LaFell

Veteran receiver Brandon LaFell had 37 catches for the Patriots last season. Winslow Townson/AP Images for Panini

CINCINNATI -- One team has made it to the postseason each of the past seven seasons.

The other has been there each of the past five.

One team's head coach is the NFL's most tenured. The other's is the league's second-most tenured.

That isn't where the similarities end between the New England Patriots and Cincinnati Bengals, according to the Bengals' newest receiver, former Patriots wideout Brandon LaFell. Part of LaFell's decision to sign with Cincinnati last month after being cut by New England was based on the run of success the Bengals have had of late.

"I've won at least 12 games the last three years," said LaFell, whose 2013-15 Panthers and Patriots teams all went 12-4 in the regular season. "Once you get a taste of winning you don't want to take a step back and go somewhere where they're trying to rebuild. If you have options to pick and choose where you want to go, you pick and choose a team that still is winning, has a good quarterback, good system and good opportunity to win."

Although the Bengals don't have any wins from their five-straight playoff berths, they do have a pair of division titles and a string of four straight 10-win seasons. It is once the teams reach the playoffs where the comparisons end. The Patriots have advanced much further, appearing in the past five AFC Championship Games, and even winning a Super Bowl. LaFell played a key role in New England's run to the Super Bowl XLIX victory two seasons ago.

Beyond the scope of team success, LaFell sees strong comparisons between the Bengals and Patriots' offenses. Andy Dalton might not be Tom Brady, but LaFell believes Dalton runs Cincinnati's offense similarly.

"Both teams go with a little no-huddle, play with a little tempo, make a lot of calls at the line of scrimmage to get the whole offense into the right plays," LaFell said.

When LaFell arrives for voluntary offseason workouts next week he will have more chances to watch film with his new teammates, and to dig into the concepts and schemes that make the Bengals' offense unique. Still, he can see why he could fit in first-year offensive coordinator Ken Zampese's system.

"It's similar in some aspects to the way they spread the ball around," LaFell said. "The running backs are a big part of the passing game, and the tight ends are a big part of the passing game. And they like to stay in attack mode."

According to ESPN Stats & Information, the Bengals and Patriots had similar third-down conversion ratings last season. Cincinnati had a 40.3 percent conversion rating, and New England averaged 40.9 percent. The teams also averaged the exact same number of yards gained per play: 5.71.