The Cincinnati Bengals Evaluating Future Early

Bengals

As we all know, this season was the first of two seasons where Mike Brown wanted to get competitive again. It is evident that the first season regardless of the outcome became a failure. Bengal fans have tasted some success during the Marvin Lewis era but they want more and deserve more.

So let’s go over many things we do know should happen to catch up to being competitive next season.

We found out last game against the Cleveland Browns, that his team still mathematically have a shot at the playoffs but will not do a thing in the playoffs. Every team the Bengals beat this year is a mediocre team. They beat the Colts, Ravens, Falcons, Dolphins, and Bucs. They lost to the Panthers, Steelers, Chiefs, Saints, Ravens, and Browns. Every team but the Browns are competitive not only for the playoffs but 4 of the 6 teams are going for a super bowl bid.

So they can’t beat good teams. What else do we know?

We have noticed that the old blueprints of the team is not working. We have given the league almost 8 years of excuses for why Marvin Lewis and his QB Andy Dalton failed to win a playoff. Start from the top. Marvin Lewis needs to step down from the Head Coaching position. The players don’t have the same trust they had in him when they were winning at least 10 games a season. Then work your way out to the Offensive Coordinator (Bill Lazor) and they already removed Defensive Coordinator (Teryl Austin). The final piece is to get a new Qb. Andy Dalton has run out of excuses. He doesn’t have the same intensity that some fans found appealing when he first came to the league. We found out early he is only a sub par Qb without AJ Green and he is mediocre with him.

One piece of the puzzle has happened in the opening minutes of the 2nd half when Andy Dalton injured his thumb.

I hate when anyone gets hurt in the game we all love but sometimes injures come in the form of fate. Remember the Patriots Drew Bledsoe got injured in a game against the Jets. Then after Tom Brady came in history was being made. I’m not saying Jeff Driskel will become the savior of this team but this will open our eyes to the matter of its time to close the book on Dalton. Jeff Driskel had a great half of play on short notice and the players opened up to him. With Driskel having a full week of reps in practice and tailor making the offense to suit his style of play can get a good jump-start for the young QB. The other players are very optimistic with Driskel and can’t wait to see what he can do.

AJ Green announced earlier in the week he is healthy to come back this week.

This is great news. He knows the team is on a jump-start early rebuild but he will not want to sit out like Dalton will be doing. In fact Green made it known he does not want to sit out. He is a major contributor to the team and his stats show it. Holding Green back at this junction of the season to save him for next season will be the very way to make him want to leave the team. I think Green will enjoy the change at Qb and might be fun again which looks too me he hasn’t been having fun lately.

Could Driskel solve the problem with the defense?

Another great key to point out with the change at Qb is the command of the field Driskel has. Each scoring drive he had been at least 5 minutes and consisted of a mixture of run and pass plays. Long sustaining drives keeps that horrible defense on the bench which helped them play almost lights out defense while Driskel was playing. Browns QB Baker Mayfield had just over 250 yards by half time. When Driskel took over he didn’t even have 50 yards. In fact the Browns didn’t even gather 100 yards total in the second half.

Who knows maybe Bill Lazor can save his job if he can tailor the offense and get it right for Jeff Driskel. They still need offensive line help so they brang back Andre Smith. I would love to see some form of an option style offense (not full-scale but design it into the playbook).

Now Driskel keeping the defense on the bench will help some on the defense but you can’t really help productivity and injures. The Bengals decided to move Vontaze Burfcit to middle line backer. This will help the other Lb combinations that they have with Burfict. Let’s give Burfict these last five games to prove to us he still can lead this defense. If he can’t get a handle on it then this is another component that has been here for a while and gave us not the type of success that this city craves.

Here is a question to you all that read this. With the Bengals defensive personnel can they have a better defense with a 3-4 instead of a 4-3 defense?

I truly think Sam Hubbard can play better in a 3-4. Lawson played a 3-4 in college as an outside linebacker. Geno Atkins can play defensive end and Andrew Billings be the Nose tackle. Carlos Dunlap can be the other outside Lb while Jordan Willis will play opposite of Atkins. The 3-4 would focus more on gaps than the pass rush but off course the edge rushers the Bengals possess are super quick to get to the Qb with different schemes every down.

Please comment on my blog and share this. Please follow me by email.

This is the longest most time-consuming post I ever wrote so I hope you like it.

 

 

Advertisements

Jessie Bates having a Pro Bowl Season

When you look at the Pro Bowl voting for Bengal players you automatically have to think AJ Green and Geno Atkins is high on the list. Can you think of a time when a Rookie Free Safety by the Bengals got major votes at this time of year? Jessie Bates is having the season we were hoping for.

The Cincinnati Bengals are getting an A+ in the second round of this past draft. Jessie Bates the stand out Free Safety from Wake Forest came into training camp thinking he was going to be the backup for veteran Free Safety George Iloka. One of the big noises in the off-season was Iloka getting cut and putting the rookie in as the starter. Picked as the 4th Safety in the draft, Bates might have a better season than any of the other safeties in his class.

Jessie Bates has compiled 80 tackles, 5 deflected passes, 3 interceptions, and a defensive touchdown. 65% of his tackles were solo tackles. The kids vision is extraordinary for a rookie. He reads the eyes of the QB like a center fielder eyes a ball in the outfield. He covers the field with dominating speed. He does not allow a lot of yards after catch.

Bates first game against the Bengals rival Ravens had his first interception in his young career. He had an Interception to help decide the game against the Miami Dolphins. Then against the Tampa Bay Bucs he scored his first touchdown.

The Bengals had Reggie Nelson go to the Pro Bowl in 2015. That’s the last time the Bengals brought a safety to the Pro Bowl. When you talk about his talent and knowledge of the position at such a young age you have to think back to David Fulcher in the 90s. Bates isn’t built like Fulcher but his knowledge exceeds that expectation. There is a very good belief that we will see Bates in the Pro Bowl for many years.

Parting ways with George Iloka seemed like a bad idea at the start but it created monster dividends. This is the way the Bengals should look toward the next couple seasons. When is it time to let players go and hand the torch over to younger more versatile players like Jessie Bates. There are a lot of main players that have not made this franchise move to the next level and now they need to roll the dice again.

Again Happy Thanksgiving to all of my readers. If you like this article give me a follow and share when you can. Thanks also for it is close to the sites 1st year. I am looking forward to giving you the posts that you would like. Give a comment if you want to know some news and I can get that for you. Thanks again!!!

Cincinnati Bengals Want To Rely On Jessie Bates And Josh Malone

Bengals

After the Cincinnati Bengals had their 3rd week of OTAs, it is clear they want to rely on the younger players. There have been interesting strides for rookie Safety Jessie Bates and second year wide receiver Josh Malone.

In week three Teryl Austin has put Jessie Bates on the safety position. This was due to the injury to Shawn Williams. Jessie Bates played free safety in college but has been put in the strong safety role. He has been playing lights out as far as how easy it is to adapt. He will start in place of Williams when training starts. I cant wait to see what he does in live contact and in the first pre-season game.

Most of the OTAs have matched Josh Malone with William Jackson III. Josh Malone had a poor rookie season but we can blame that not on his ability but on the offensive line and having no time for Andy Dalton to throw the football. Josh has been getting open and his routes are getting very polished. Putting him against the Bengals better cover guys makes them want more out of the wide receiver from Tennessee. His great hands and very good route running would make me believe they want him to make the team and maybe fight for that third receiver.

Jessie Bates already reminds me of a mini David Fulcher. He has shown he can play both safety positions and he has played some hybrid situations. He will be great in different defensive schemes. It will help that weak Line backer core with coverage on the tight ends and running backs. Now how hard does Jessie Bates hit? We wont know if he hits like Fulcher till they get the pads on.

Josh Malone reminds me of another wide receiver from Tennessee. Reminder Carl Pickens in the 90s. Josh has the hands , has the speed, and has disciplined route running just like Pickens but without the bad attitude. He knows he has to shine with a couple of other receivers shining past him last season.

Can The Cincinnati Bengals Turn Things Around In 2018

Bengals

Mike Brown gave Marvin Lewis a two-year contract extension. They also gave Lewis a few new faces on the coaching staff. Things need to be turned around now.

Realistically this is what needs to happen. Marvin Lewis has two years to get things done. It all starts with him. In the first year he needs to show improvement. We can’t realistically say the Bengals will win a playoff or even go to the playoffs without seeing any of the additions the Bengals made play a single snap yet.

First thing is first, they need to build up the biggest need they needed the past two years. That is their offensive line. They beefed it up with the trade made with the Buffalo Bills to get Cordy Glenn at Tackle. They grabbed Billy Price former center of the Ohio State Buckeyes in the first round of the 2018 draft. They totally eliminated some players like Russell Bodine and Andre Smith. They also have an offensive line coach, Frank Pollack ,that can evaluate every lineman the Bengals have and place them where their talent lies.

The establishment of a new reconstructed offensive line can do plenty that the Bengals couldn’t do last year. An improved offensive line will give Joe Mixon the validity of being the running back we all know he can be. He played limited playing time and went over 700 yards and that’s with a terrible offensive line. Imagine what Mixon can do with an improved line.

 

Joe Mixon
Joe Mixon stiff-arms like a boss

A new offensive line will give Andy Dalton more time. The last two years he has been sacks the second most in the NFL. His numbers have been going down since the absence of Andrew Whitworth and Kevin Zeitler. He needs the passing lanes opened up. Andy Dalton plays better inside the pocket because his accuracy is never quite there when he is rolling out. This will also open up play action passing when the run gets more respect.

The other part that needs to be focused on this year is the talent of the wide receivers. John Ross only appeared in three games and had one catch and fumbled it. The key is make sure John Ross puts his rookie year behind him. It is in the past. He should have been honest about his healing time. Now that he has had the time to heal that new offensive line should help all the receivers.

John Ross
Don’t give up on John Ross

The Bengals have been missing the talent of two great receivers lost in the off-season after 2015. Marvin Jones is the Detroit Lions number one receiver now. Mohamed Sanu is the Falcons third receiver. They need to get the talent of the Bengals receiver core straight. There is a huge amount of talent with no identity with the exception of AJ Green of course.

With all the additions to the offense and a new defensive coordinator Teryl Austin the Bengals should improve this year. Next year with adding even more to the roster Marvin Lewis has no choice but to win that elusive playoff game.

 

Carlos Dunlap Sits Out Of The Cincinnati Bengals OTAs

Carlos Dunlap

Everyone knows DE Carlos Dunlap is in a contract year. He does not want to take the chance of injury during the OTAs.

Carlos Dunlap is in a huge contract year with the Cincinnati Bengals. He is set to make $7.3 million this year. This contract has been a huge team discount. He averaged $8 million a year when clearly he should be a $20 million a year player. That is what he is hoping for.

Carlos Dunlap will not take the chance of injury during the OTAs. It is a good decision seems a note worthy player have already fallen at the start of OTAs. The Tight End of the LA Chargers Hunter Henry tore his ACL during OTAs and will be out for the season. Dunlap and the Cincinnati Bengals realize how cheap they were getting Dunlap for. There definitely is a need to keep him out till Pre-season starts. He will work out and stay healthy on his own. He can’t afford to get injured during OTAs which is not required to participate in.

 

The Cincinnati Bengals Star Cornerback William Jackson III Will Be Covering Pro- Bowl Talent This Season

William Jackson III

The Cincinnati Bengals had star cornerback William Jackson III become one of the best situational cornerbacks in the game. This year the fans want to see him become a starter. This is what he has to cover if he does start.

There is no doubt the Cincinnati Bengals selecting cornerback William Jackson III in the first round of the 2016 draft was the right decision. He missed his first season due to injury but came with vengeance in his second year. He posted some of the best numbers by a cornerback since PFF (Pro Football Focus) started grading players back in 2007. He was a backup though. That is why he didn’t get the full accolades he so richly deserves.

 

William Jackson III
William Jackson III proof he was a shutdown corner in 2017.

Now that the fans want William Jackson to be a full-time starter, this is who he will be facing this season. He will be facing six-time Pro-Bowler Antonio Brown twice. He is arguably the best wide receiver in the game today yet Jackson only allowed two catches for seven yards last year.

Top Wide Receivers William Jackson III has to face
Top Wide Receivers William Jackson III has to face.

He will also be facing some Pro-Bowlers outside of the division. Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones had 88 catches and 1444 yards with only three touchdowns. Believe it or not that is a mediocre season for a high talented player like Jones. Tampa Bay Bucs wide receiver Mike Evans had 71 catches for 1004 yards and five touchdowns last season. This young receiver is getting acknowledgement of being a top five wide receiver like Julio Jones. LA Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen had 102 catches for 1393 yards and scored six touchdowns. He is maybe the most under rated receiver with only five years in the league. New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas is the youngest player on the list. With Dree Brees passing to Thomas it is no wonder he averaged 100 catches in his first two years.

Houston Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins is by far the best athlete on this list of receivers. It does not matter which quarterback is for the Texans. He makes them look great. This will probably be the hardest matchup William Jackson III will have to face.

William Jackson III is fully capable of covering all these gifted receivers on a full-time basis. This will make for a very compelling argument for the rest of the off-season. Let’s hope the Bengals give him the chance to bring it to life.

The Cincinnati Bengals Defensive Leader : Vontaze Burfict

Vontaze Burfict

The Cincinnati Bengals will be starting the 2018 season without their defensive captain Vontaze Burfict. He is suspended for four games due to his PED violation.

Bengals olb Vontaze Burfict has started every season since 2014 either on the DL or serving a suspension. He has an old school spirit and plays with an old school mentality. It has gotten to the point where every time Burfict makes a hard hit on a player there could be a flag on a great hit. It has already been said that he could be praised as one of the greats if he was playing in the 70’s.

Usually his suspensions are for disorderly conduct on the field. This time it is for violating PED regulations. Burfict tried to appeal to no great outcome. He had unknown substance in the medication he was taking for his injury suffered by Steelers wide receiver Juju Smith Schuster. His appeal was denied.

Another season without the Bengals defensive leader is becoming common knowledge. Soon some skeptics think it is starting to be not worth the time having him not fulfill his season commitment while taking suspensions every season.

In 2013 Vontaze Burfict made headlines. He made the Pro Bowl in his second year. He worked real hard for he wasn’t even drafted. It is not hard to believe that one of the best linebackers in the game wasn’t even drafted. His talent is unreal but his attitude dropped him out of the draft. After his first Pro Bowl he is back to his crazy attics.

Here is the question though. How did he become the leader? He bleeds for this organization. He puts every ounce of energy into everything he does. He never holds back. As his teammates start to realize how gifted he was, they started to follow what he preaches. This defense has been in the top ten in many defensive categories since Burfict’s arrival. Even without him for four games they will give it all they have.

Now will anyone step up in his absence? Backup olb Jordan Evans had a rocky start last season but ended with a lot of experience under his belt. Look for Evans and rookie Malik Jefferson to share the role. When Burfict comes back they will be ready to roll. Hopefully they can get at least three victories during his suspension. That would serve a credit to Teryl Austin for getting two young talents ready for action.

Vontaze Burfict’s actions speak louder than words. That is for the good and the bad. For all the plays he has made it would be foolish to even think about dropping him. He is this defense. This whole defense respects him.

TRUST IN BURFICT

WHO DEY!!!!!