Ravens at Bengals: The good , the bad and the ugly

Опубликовано linchao - ср, 11/07/2018 - 05:59

 The Cincinnati Bengals are 2-0. There were times in which the game looked either totally controlled and others where things seemed to be slipping through their grasp, but they came through for their second consecutive win (and composite score of 34-23). Here are the best and worst from the team’s win on Thursday Night Football. The good:“The Red-Green” connection: What more is there to say here? Andy Dalton threw four touchdown passes in the win, with three of them going to Green. In two games, Dalton has Youth William Jackson Jersey six touchdown passes against one interception, while Green has four touchdowns in the same span. Compare that to a zero touchdown-four interception start to 2017, along with a subpar one from Green in the first two games of last season. The defensive line: Yes, Joe Flacco ended up making some big passing plays later in the game, but the big guys up front harassed him all night long. Geno Atkins had two sacks and numerous pressures, while rookie Sam Hubbard joined in with a sack of Flacco of his own. Jordan Willis had a critical fumble recovery, while Dunlap was disruptive, as well. The big boys up front were critical in limiting the Ravens’ rushing attack to just 66 yards on 22 rushing plays—a 3.0 yards-per-carry average. The safeties: Shawn Williams and Jessie Bates III were huge difference-makers on Thursday night. Both had an interception of Flacco, while Williams had a strip-sack in the fourth quarter to help ice the victory. Bates had a chance at two other interceptions, but regardless, they also combined for 11 tackles along with their three forced turnovers.The offensive line: It wasn’t a perfect night up front, as three of the guys had penalties, but they stood strong, for the most part. They let up zero sacks to a Ravens defense that netted six against Buffalo just a week earlier, while also paving the way for Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard to combine for 27 carries and 11 yards (4.1 yards per carry).Heck, even Trey Hopkins filled in at center admirably, which isn’t his top position on the roster:Bill Lazor and his myriad of weapons: Whether it was having the offense get off to a 28-14 first half lead, concocting a scheme to get the ball into eight different receivers, or establishing the run against a stout defense, it was a good night for the team’s offensive coordinator. The trio of tight ends comprised of Tyler Eifert, Tyler Kroft and C.J. Uzomah combined for seven catches and 79 yards, while Green and Tyler Boyd had four touchdowns on the evening. Special teams: Rookie Darius Phillips was the team’s primary punt return man and had 24 yards on two opportunities. Randy Bullock was again perfect on the evening, accounting for 10 points with two clutch second half field goals, while Kevin Huber pinned the Ravens inside their own 20-yard line four times on six kicks. The bad:Letting a big lead slip away: As it was last week with the Colts, Thursday night was a tale of two halves. Cincinnati had four touchdowns in the first half http://www.bengalsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-michael-johnson-jersey , but John Ross: It was great to see Ross get in the end zone last week, but it’s still clear that both he and Dalton aren’t always on the same page. He did have a reception on Thursday night, but also had a run for minus-three yards and a dropped pass. It seemed like a good night for him to have big plays, given the Bengals’ success in the pass game, but it didn’t happen.Two total receptions on six targets through the first two games isn’t ideal, but he’s essentially in his rookie season, given the time he missed last year. Still, most are waiting for those explosive plays that his college tape and NFL Combine-record 40-time displayed. A disparity in the nerdy stats: Though Cincinnati dominated the first half and came out victorious, there were some stats that still create uneasiness. Cincinnati was beaten by the Ravens in the following statistical categories: total plays (81 to 70), first downs (28 to 24), third down efficiency (43% to 38%) and passing yards (359 to 265). Now, there are a couple of reasons and other takeaways here. Short fields created by turnovers and special teams contributed to the disparities, but some of these have been a week-to-week trend. On the positive, Cincinnati had more turnovers (three to zero) and sacks (four to zero).The ugly:The injuries: Even though the Bengals came up with the win, the game was a veritable bloodbath. Joe Mixon has a knee issue that is going to force him out of the lineup for a couple of weeks, Billy Price is nursing a strained foot, while Michael Johnson sprained a knee ligament. Yikes. The officiating: The crew on Thursday night was incredibly inconsistent in their calls. Both teams suffered some ticky-tack calls, causing frustration from the squads, their fans and casual NFL viewers.The Debrief: Bengals vs Steelers Week in Review Edition 1) Cincinnati has two questionable players heading into Sunday’s game against Pittsburgh. Wide receiver John Ross (groin) and cornerback William Jackson (knee) are questionable for Sunday’s game against the Steelers. Ross suffered his injury against the Atlanta Falcons, missing last week’s comeback against Miami, while William Jackson suffered his against the Dolphins. Jackson’s absence could be a major blow of the Bengals secondary, who are preparing for Antonio Brown and JuJu Smith-Schuster. In his past four games against the Bengals, Antonio Brown is averaging 4.8 receptions and 65.8 yards receiving. Smith-Schuster, currently the Steelers leading receiver, has posted six receptions for 56 yards receiving combined in two career games against the Bengals.If Ross can’t go on Sunday, based on how the team approached last week, it should be assumed that Erickson will work as the No. 3 (in terms of depth, not on-field alignment). Erickson posted three receptions for 24 yards receiving last week — the three grabs ranks second-most in his career and yards ranks third-highest. The Bengals started with a two-WR and two-TE set last week against Miami Dre Kirkpatrick Jersey , with Tyler Kroft and C.J. Uzomah in formation. On the next play, Alex Erickson entered the game as the third receiver, joining A.J. Green and Tyler Boyd on the left with Uzomah flanked wide right. Tyler Kroft is definitely out Sunday. That’s two. Anyone tight ends named Tyler better watch out. Cincinnati has lost two. The rest of the world is on notice. If the Bengals go with three tight ends Sunday, figure Mason Schreck and the recently signed Matt Lengel joining Uzomah. Also questionable is Cedric Ogbuehi, who appeared on Thursday’s injury report with a wrist. Ogbuehi, the team’s first-round pick from the 2015 NFL draft, has been a healthy-scratch through the first five games. Bengals Injury/Practice Report Week 7POSBENGALSINJURYWEDTHURFRISTATUSPOSBENGALSINJURYWEDTHURFRISTATUS2) Transactions. As noted above, the Bengals — after losing Tyler Eifert for the season and Tyler Kroft for several weeks — signed Matt Lengel off Houston’s practice squad. Former Super Bowl Champion Matt Lengel previously signed with Cincinnati as a college free agent following the 2015 NFL draft. He spent that season, and part of 2016, on Cincinnati’s practice squad before New England signed him to their 53-man roster — they had just lost Rob Gronkowski. Lengel caught a touchdown pass from Tom Brady on Christmas eve and was part of the roster that won Super Bowl LI. Cincinnati also signed cornerback Demetroius Cox, who spent the 2017 preseason in Cincinnati, to the practice squad. (Writer’s Note: I erroneously wrote during a Debrief earlier this week that Cox spent time on Cincinnati’s practice squad that year). Cox replaced cornerback C.J. Goodwin, who was signed off Cincinnati’s practice squad by the Dallas Cowboys. Thomas Rawls released. With Giovani Bernard, who is out Sunday against Pittsburgh, and Joe Mixon (missed two games earlier this season) suffering dueling injuries, Cincinnati signed Thomas Rawls as a contingency. Rawls, inactive in week three and four, played last week against Miami. Cincinnati released him this week without taking an offensive snap — he had two special teams snaps. That’s it.Quotes of the Week: Bengals cornerback William Jackson on whether he’s better than Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown: “Of course. I think I’m the best player on the planet. You cannot play this game if you think you’re not.” Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey on Vontaze Burfict: “I actually like playing against Burfict, man,” he said via ESPN. “I think he’s a great player. He’s physical; he talks trash, but he does it in the right way — sometimes it’s a little excessive — but when you’re a defensive player, it’s supposed to be like that.”Bengals / Steelers previews: John Sheeran: Five things to watch against the SteelersJosh Kirkendall: Bengals vs Steelers is a litmus test for the BengalsPatrick Judis: Behind the Enemy LinesMatt Minich: Bengals can exploit big issues in Steelers’ pass defenseAnthony Cosenza: Who’s the boss? Orange and Black Insider: Steeling ThunderBengals vs Steelers Madden simulation Bengals vs Steelers primer.Charity of the Week: Carlos Dunlap held his fifth annual spa day for women, benefitting the fight against breast cancer. Our own Rebecca Toback writes:Bengals defensive end Michael Johnson, who took part in Dunlap’s spa day, was also featured on the NFL Network for his work bridging the gap between area youth and law enforcement. I don’t know if the Bengals will ever win a Super Bowl.What I do know is that these players are worth celebrating for the class that they bring to an organization that once fight hard to re-build their image. It makes you proud to be a Bengals fan. Damn proud.