The Bengals finally looked to establish their running game on Sunday, highlighted by a season-high 157 total rushing yards (not counting 32 on fake-punt), as well as a season-high 101 yards on 25 carries by BenJarvus Green-Ellis, and he was also the Bengals’ first 100-yard rusher since Cedric Benson ran through the Browns’ defense en route to a 106-yard day on November 27th of last season! Clearly the running game hasn’t been a strength on this team the past two years, and perhaps backup RB Cedric Peerman could provide a boost heading down the stretch.
For the second-consecutive week, Peerman received a small number of snaps, this time getting in for 8 plays (11%). Ironically, Peerman had 8 carries for 75 yards, though 32 of those came on a fake-punt on special teams, meaning he effectively ran 7 times for 42 yards on offense (6 ypc). Not bad for the former Virginia Cavalier, and why this coaching staff doesn’t give him more touches is beyond me. Going into last week’s game vs. the Giants, Peerman had received 6 offensive carries (7 if you count the fake-punt in Week 4 vs. the Jaguars).
Against the Giants and Chiefs, he carried the ball 13 times for 63 yards (4.8 ypc) while also catching one pass for 9 yards. For the season, he has 19 carries for 99 yards (5.2) to go with 9 catches for 85 yards (8.5 avg). Maybe the coaching staff sees something in practice we don’t that is causing them not to play Peerman more, but given the limited abilities of BenJarvus Green-Ellis, seeing more of the speedier Peerman could help the Bengals run game that is currently ranked 20th in the NFL, and with games against the Ravens and Steelers to finish out the year, the success (or lack thereof) will determine whether or not the Bengals are sitting at home for the postseason.