As many problems as the offense had pass-blocking, they turned in another solid performance, earning BenJarvus Green-Ellis another 100+ yard performance at over 4 YPA. While the Bengals continue to block well, the run-blocking scheme has been adjusted to suit the strengths of both the offensive line and Green-Ellis.
At the beginning of the season, the Bengals were running almost exclusively zone-blocking plays. But Green-Ellis is better suited for a more power-blocking scheme, where he has a predetermined hole to hit and he can rumble towards it, gaining a full head of steam. Throw in the fact that Cincinnati’s offensive line is full of giant maulers who can win head-to-head contests.
In this play on the first drive, the Bengals pull out a Power G running play. It is the same as the Power O, the staple of the power running game, only the play-side guard pulls. Dalton sends Marvin Jones in motion, and sees the man coverage. He sends Jones to the left in an H-back position, utilizing Jones’ size and run-blocking ability.
Left guard Boling blocks the backside defensive tackle, and Jones locks up well with the defensive end. Whitworth and center Trevor Robinson get up to the second level and seal off the linebackers. Zeitler pulls from the right guard and manages to pull and seal the outside corner before the outside linebacker can react and scrape to the gap.
That leaves Chris Pressley, and in the future John Connor, to take on the strong safety and spring Green-Ellis for a big 29-yard gain.
The offense did well with the inside zone run, as well. Both guards moved well to the second level after securing their first-level blocks in this third-quarter run, Zeitler especially as he drives the defender back almost to the linebacker. Green-Ellis saw the huge lane the Zeitler opened up, and Green-Ellis shot through the hole for a 16-yard pick up in the third quarter.
The passing game looked far less healthy, except when Green was involved.