The Opponent: There aren't many teams in the league who have been more disappointing than the Cincinnati Bengals, who currently sit at 2-8. Despite having an offense filled with big name players and a defense that was supposed to be one of the better units in league, neither side of the football has been consistent enough to win football games. The Bengals are coming off a brutal 49-31 loss to the Buffalo Bills, where they gave away a 28-7 lead.
Offense: The Bengals aren't short on wide receivers who are having big statistical years. However, it is largely a product of them frequently trailing by large margins in many of their games. Terrell Owens leads the way with 62 receptions, 897 yards, and 8 touchdowns. Chad Ochocinco has 50 receptions, 587 yards, and 4 touchdowns. Also rookie receiver Jordan Shipley and rookie tight end are Jermaine Gresham are having productive seasons. Shipley has 480 receiving yards and Gresham has 330, along with 3 touchdowns.
Regardless of what the stats say (2625 yards, 18 TDs, 13 INTs, 60.9 completion percentage) Carson Palmer has been brutal this year. For some reason I have seen an inordinate number of Bengals games in 2010 and he is missing receivers all over the field and compiling stats in garbage time on a weekly basis. Cedric Benson has 747 yards rushing but is only averaging 3.7 yards per carry and has lost 4 fumbles. The Bengals have allowed Palmer to be sacked 17 times so far in 2010.
Defense: Cincinnati is ranked 8th in the NFL at defending the pass and 23rd at defending the run. It sounds like a good week to get that running game back on track. Dhani Jones (yes he is still around) leads the team in tackles with 81. The Bengals have recorded a pathetic 10 sacks through 10 games, with safety Chris Crocker leading the way with 2. Leon Hall and Jonathan Joseph remain a solid cornerback duo. Hall has 4 interceptions and 8 passes defensed. Joseph has 3 interceptions and 5 passes defensed. The Bengals have allowed 20 or more points in their last 7 games, all of which have been losses.
Special Teams: Kicker Mike Nugent recently had season ending injury, forcing the Bengals to sign Aaron Pettrey off the street. Bernard Scott can be dangerous on kick returns.
Early Chatter: Terrell Owens grabbed headlines today by calling Darrelle Revis "an average corner" who was a one year wonder...get your popcorn ready, T.O. because I am pretty sure Revis completely owned you last year.