5 things we learned from the Bengals’ win over the Falcons : 0xbt | CryptoManiac

5 things we learned from the Bengals’ win over the Falcons

    linchao
    By linchao
    Everyone who goes into Atlanta should expect a shootout. The Falcon’s high-powered offense combined with their banged-up defense makes for a Big 12-like matchup. Only a team with a defense as bad as the Falcons’ can score at least 36 points in two straight games and lose them both.So the Bengals Cincinnati Bengals Hats , looking to rebound from a disappointing outing against the Panthers the week before, were in prime position to put up points.If you like defense, look away. Andy Dalton and Matt Ryan combined for nearly 750 passing yards and six touchdowns, while each earning a passer rating well over 100. There were six receivers with over 50 yards and three with over 100. Two-thirds of all third down and fourth down attempts were converted. Pretty much any way you look at it, it was by far the most offense-heavy game the Bengals have played, and probably will play, all season.Which leads us to the first thing we learned from the Bengals win over the Falcons:The pass defense needs helpIt is a tall order to ask any defense to cover Julio Jones, Mohamed Sanu, Calvin Ridley, Austin Hooper, and Tevin Coleman out of the backfield. Imagine what this offense will look like once they get Devonta Freeman back.That being said, Jones and Sanu combined for nearly 300 yards of offense, part of Ryan’s 409-yard passing day. The defensive backs and linebackers couldn’t cover anyone if their lives depended on it.The other problem with the pass coverage is the turnover margin. In the first two games, the defense forced five turnovers and kept opposing offenses to only 23 points. In the last two weeks, the Bengals defense has forced no turnovers and given up over 30 points in both games. Teryl Austin has been all about takeaways, and his defense is proving that it is much more difficult to win games without them.The defensive line wins games.The defensive line proved that the only way to stop Ryan was to sack him.Geno Atkins sacked Ryan on fourth-and-five in the first quarter, giving the offense a short field and setting up Giovani Bernard’s first touchdown.Carlos Dunlap sacked Ryan in the red zone on the Falcons’ possession ensuing a blocked punt. The Falcons could have easily scored a touchdown, starting their drive on the eight-yard line. But the Falcons lost two yards on the drive and had to settle for three points instead of six.Carl Lawson sacked Ryan to force a third-and-goal on the 19-yard line in the fourth quarter. On the ensuing play, Ryan overthrew Hooper in the end zone, making the Falcons settle for three once again.In a game where both teams combined for nine touchdowns, every stop was important. Instead of ending possessions with touchdowns, the defensive line single-handedly stopped the Falcons from scoring touchdowns three times. In a one-point game, even allowing a touchdown on one of those drives probably would have changed the outcome.The Bengals’ offense is dangerousThe Falcons probably planned on double-covering Green for most of the game, but that proved to be an ineffective strategy.First of all, this led to Tyler Boyd being the most targeted receiver in the game. Boyd’s 15 targets and 11 receptions netted him exactly 100 yards, which makes this the second 100-yard game in a row for Boyd. In fact, Dalton connected with Boyd four times in the game-winning drive five times before finding Green for the last score of the game. It’s not that Boyd’s chemistry with Dalton is better than Green’s; the Falcons were doing a better job of covering Green, but Boyd kept getting favorable matchups.Boyd wasn’t the only beneficiary of Greens’ prowess. Tyler Eifert was left one-on-one against strong safety Brian Poole when the free safety Damontae Kazee was drawn towards Green and Boyd’s side of the field. You never want to leave a defensive back one-on-one against Eifert.Later on, Green and Boyd drew Kazee to their side of the field, leaving the speedster Ross alone against cornerback Isaiah Oliver, who only ran a paltry 4.5 in the 40-yard dash at the combine.The Bengals offense, much like the Falcons, has become too potent for defenses to cover. As long as Dalton takes care of the ball, the Bengals should have no problem putting up points.John Ross is not bustedA week ago, many were already calling Ross a bust after having only 16 receiving yards and allowing two picks to be thrown when he was targeted. Boyd and Green said after the game that Ross needed some work Cincinnati Bengals Hoodie , but they were sure that he could overcome whatever problems he was facing.There were also those on Twitter that were clamoring for Ross’ head, calling him a “bust” three games into his second season.Then Ross torched the Falcon’s secondary for a 39-yard touchdown, exceeding his second-longest catch of the season by 30 yards. He might have had more, too, if he could have played through his injury.Was Ross going through some issues? Clearly. But was nothing to get worked up over. Boyd had similar problems at the beginning of last season, yet the Bengals stuck with him, and he is now 11th in the NFL in receiving yards and leading the team in receptions and yards.Even Chad Johnson had to go through a similar struggle before he could become the Bengals all-time leader in every statistical category.So, while Ross was struggling, he had the mental toughness to get through it. He’s not out of the woods yet, and still has to work on his game every single week. But there is a reason the Bengals drafted Ross. Expect more touchdowns out of him as the year goes on.Joe Mixon is the Bengals’ best cheerleaderThe Bengals’ second-year running back was expected to have a huge impact this year, but he has been sidelined for at least two games with a knee injury. Even though he clearly wants to play, he is forced to stand on the sidelines wearing a t-shirt. It must be killing him to not play, but that hasn’t stopped him from cheering on his team.On almost every touchdown, the first person to greet the scoring player on the sidelines is Mixon. He helped encourage Dalton while they were waiting for the officials to review and overturn his fumble. He even helped pump up the crowd after the final whistle blew.No one was rooting harder for the Bengals last week than Mixon. Hopefully, he will be able to switch out his t-shirt for a jersey and help his team win from the field instead of the sideline.Bengals make unreal comeback to beat Dolphins, 27-17 Coming off a hard-fought win over the Falcons, the Bengals hosted the Dolphins who were looking to rebound from a thumping against the Patriots.After a miserable first half, the Bengals stormed back into the game with some dominant second half play from offense, defense and special teams. Cincinnati scored 27 unanswered points to win the game, 27-17. It was sealed by a Carlos Dunlap strip sack, which turned into a Sam Hubbard touchdown and then further sealed by Jessie Bates’ second career interception to end the game. The rookies stepped up, the defense stepped up, everyone stepped up. It was a glorious second half after nothing went right in the first half.The biggest pre-game news for the Bengals was that Vontaze Burfict was playing his his first game since serving his four-game suspension. He made an instant impact, getting three tackles in the first defensive drive and helping to force a punt from the Dolphins on the opening possession.Andy Dalton got off to a hot start, with Bill Lazor calling the plays against his former team. Dalton completed each of his first four attempts for 62 yards, spreading the ball out to four different receivers. But the drive ended when Dalton’s pass to A.J. Green was tipped and caught by Dolphins linebacker Kiko Alonso, setting up the Dolphins on the Bengals’ 19-yard line after returning the interception for 15 yards.The Bengals defense held up against the Dolphins offense in the first quarter, keeping them to only 44 yards and no third down conversions. Even though the Bengals had 109 yards on their first two drives combined, the game remained scoreless well into the second quarter.The Dolphins broke the deadlock with a 22-yard touchdown pass to running back Kenyon Drake. After an excellent punt from Kevin Huber, the Dolphins drove all the way from their own five yard line. The 11-play, six-minute drive was manufactured by quarterback Ryan Tannehill’s arm, with eight passing plays to only three running plays. The touchdown on the wheel route to Drake was the longest play of the drive. After the score, Jason Sanders converted the extra point and the Dolphins were ahead 7-0 with 7:22 remaining in the second quarter. Dalton responded and found Green and Tyler Boyd for huge gains. But the Bengals faced third down later on the drive, which would become a nagging issue throughout the course of the half. The Bengals settled for a field goal, but Bollock’s 37-yard attempt was blocked Customized Cincinnati Bengals Jerseys , so the Bengals would come up empty handed yet again. Special teams wasn’t done messing things up for Cincinnati though.The Bengals punted the ball away with less than one minute left in the half, but Jakeem Grant returned the punt 68 yards for the score. Sanders’ extra point was good, so the Dolphins took a 14-0 lead right before halftime. Once again, the Bengals allowed their opponent to score with seconds remaining before halftime and this one was hard to watch. Here are some of the ugly first-half numbers. Dalton (8) had nearly half the amount of rushing yards as Joe Mixon (19).The Bengals got the ball back and promptly punted after losing nine yards on their first three plays. Assisted by a personal foul from Michael Johnson, the Dolphins were able to get into field goal range, and Sanders knocked his 41-yard attempt through with 9:30 left in the third quarter. We never saw why Johnson was penalized...Dalton got the offense going with a pass to Green for 22 yards, followed by a pass to C.J. Uzomah for 10 yards. But Dalton couldn’t finish off the drive after getting sacked on third-and-two, which brought the field goal unit into the game. Bullock finally got the Bengals on the board with a 51-yard field goal with 5:07 left in the third quarter to put an end to the Dolphins’ scoring run.Green and Boyd helped get the Bengals moving downfield, as well as some Dolphins penalties. Joe Mixon recorded a 12-yard rush which was his longest run he had at that point in a game where he never had any holes to run through. But his most impressive play of the game was on the first snap of the fourth quarter. Dalton, facing pressure, was forced to throw while taking contact. Mixon, who was downfield, adjusted to the pass and beat Alonso to break the plane for the Bengals’ first touchdown of the game. With 14:54 left in the game, the Bengals were starting to make a comeback, down only 17-10 after Bullock’s extra point.The Bengals’ momentum kept growing, and they would not trail for much longer. Tannehill faced pressure from Preston Brown and Andrew Billings, and his throw bounced off of the offensive line. Johnson gathered the ball and ran it back 21 yards for an easy pick-six. Bullock knocked the extra point through, and tied the game at 17-17 with 11:43 left in the game. Suddenly, the momentum had shifted.The Bengals defense was miles ahead of where they were in the first half, and put too much pressure on Tannehill. Mixon finally turned up the heat on the next drive, following up an 11-yard run with a 31-yarder to get the Bengals in field goal range. Bullock came in for a 19-yard kick, and the Bengals took their first lead of the game not a moment too soon, up 20-17 with 3:30 to go in the game.On that drive, Green caught a 10-yard pass from Dalton to make franchise history, putting him over 100 yards on the day. That catch allowed Green to have his 32nd career 100-yard game, breaking the record for the most 100 yard games in Bengals’ history.The Bengals’ defensive line proved too much for the Dolphins yet again. Carlos Dunlap came off the edge, and, despite being held, he forced Tannehill to fumble the ball. Cincinnati native Sam Hubbard picked it up and took it 19-yards to the house for his first career touchdown. Bullock’s extra point was good, and the Bengals extended their lead to 27-17 with two minutes remaining in the game.The Dolphins made one last push to try to get back in the game, but Jessie Bates grabbed the second interception of his career when Tannehill tried to air one out to Kenny Stills. The Bengals would get the ball with 1:35 left in the game, and even tough they punted it away, the game was too far out of reach for the Dolphins.The score would hold and the Bengals would end up winning 27-17 to improve to 4-1 on the year. Next up, the Bengals welcome the Steelers to Paul Brown Stadium on Sunday.
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