The good news is the Bengals won, and the offense looked sharp. The bad news is that the Bengals made the Browns rookies look like the second coming of Troy Aikman and Emmitt Smith. The defense will have to get tighter as the season goes along. Guys are dropping like flies, but hopefully the return of Dunlap, Moch, and Kirkpatrick will help the team establish the top 10 defense that was expected.
There are plenty of issues to worry about though. Andy Dalton is on pace to get sacked 80 times. That could kill him, and if this team is giving up over 300 yards to Brandon Weeden then the Manning brothers will throw for 1200. The return of the aforementioned cavalry can only help.
There is an odd criticism in regards to Cincinnati right now on a national level that appears to be a good problem. “They beat the teams they are supposed to beat, but lose to the good teams”. Obviously at some point they will have to beat the elite teams, but if you are losing to the Cleveland’s of the league you won’t be in any position to play meaningful games. Do you think the Patriots enjoyed losing to the Cardinals?
Despite the struggles of the offensive line to protect Andy and the defense giving up way to many yards, this is a Monday to rejoice. The Ravens lost and there is a three way tie at 1-1 in the AFC North. One of the greatest things to emerge in this early season is the big play ability of Andrew Hawkins. I haven’t seen such fine stop and go moves since Barry Sanders. He shows why Jordan Shipley became expendable, and will be a headache for defenses throughout the league.