The Cincinnati Bengals are in Miami to face the Dolphins tonight after their 49- demotion of the New York Jets. Now that’s what I’m talking about, finally a game that didn’t make my blood pressure fluctuate a hundred times. Wasn’t it nice to have a game that wasn’t a last second nail bitter?
Well, there’s no time to enjoy it because the Bengals have a quick turn around with a game in South Beach. The Dolphins are coming off a disappointing loss to the Patriots where they gave up a 17-3 lead. They will have to find a way to keep second year quarterback Ryan Tannehill from having to pick himself up after every play after watching him get sacked 6 times during New England.
Both teams suffered some injuries, the Dolphins lost Brandon Gibson for the year to a torn patellar tendon, and the Bengals lost a host of players including Andrew Whitworth, Taylor Mays, Mohammad Sanu, and Rey Maualuga. The worst looks to be Maualuga who could be out 3-4 weeks with an MCL sprain. So on a short week there are several players that will need to step up and make an impact to secure a 7-2 record heading to Baltimore.
Players That Need To Step Up:
LB JK Shaffer– JK is back! He’s on the roster after being promoted from the practice squad this week. He more than likely will be active and getting plenty of snaps on Thursday night as well. He is going to be forced into action on defense after starting MLB Maualuga went down with knee/concussion injuries and backup linebacker Michael Boely is down as well.
Miami is going to look to run the ball after a successful half running the ball last week for 22 times and 120 yards. Shaffer is a thumper and showed well in the preseason with strong instincts and a willingness to stick his nose in the hole to stop the runner in his tracks.