Bengals’ Season Recap
The Bengals were considered one of the best teams in the league heading into their primetime showdown with the New England Patriots. Unfortunately for them they ran into an angry Tom Brady and Patriots team that were sick of hearing questions about whether they still have it.
The 41-17 loss the Bengals shouldn’t discount what this team has done to this point. They rattled off three straight wins to start the season and outscored their opponents 80-33.
The Bengals have a very balanced offense led by Andy Dalton but they also have rising stars at the skill positions around him. So far this season Dalton is averaging 229.5 yards per game and has four touchdowns to only one interception on the season.
Dalton’s premier target is A.J. Green, who is one of the top wide receivers in the game. However they have another receiving option in Mohammed Sanu who is off to a great start as well. Both wide receivers are deep threats, both with a reception over 75 yards this year.
The reason the Bengals offense is so tough to stop though is because of their balance. So far this year, the Bengals have had 117 passing attempts to 120 rushing attempts. The case could be made that the Bengals most dynamic weapon is running back Gio Bernard. Through four games, Bernard has 247 rushing yards and 158 receiving yards with three rushing touchdowns.
Before the Sunday night debacle against the Patriots, this Bengals defense was very tough to beat. They have some of the best in the league on the different levels of this defense. On the defensive line they are tough to run against thanks to the defensive tackle tandem of Geno Atkins and Domata Peko.
The linebacker position has some question marks as Vontaze Burfict may be forced to sit out due to concussion issues he has dealt with this season. The loss of Burfict would be a huge blow to this defense and would certainly benefit the Panthers.
The Bengals secondary is a veteran group led by Leon Hall, Reggie Nelson and Terrance Newman. These defensive backs are going to test rookie wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin. He can’t have his drop issues like he did against the Bears. Players don’t get many chances against the Bengals secondary so if he has a chance to make the catch he needs to bring it in.
Series Record: 2-2
Last Meeting: 2010, Lost 20-7