Bengals News

Grading Carson

By Editorial Staff

When the Bengals decided to upgrade by adding T.O., Gresham and Shipley to go with EightFive, we all said that this was the year to truly judge what Carson was worth. He finally had the offensive weapons around him to work with for improving the offense again. We thought we would see something more like Carson’s early years again.

Well, what do you say now?

Carson has thrown for 1699 yd in 6 games, which would translate to 4531 yd for the season. He is averaging almost 7 yd/attempt, or over 11.2 yd/completion. He has completed 61.9% of his attempts (151/244). Those are not bad numbers.

How many of you are surprised by those numbers? I was a bit. If his numbers are that good, why is the offense THIS bad?

Obviously, the lack of pre-snap discipline has been a killer. If you are doing shots for pre-snap flags, I don’t envy the hangovers you’ve suffered this year. And the woefulness of the offensive line is not news to any of us. Neither of those are Carson’ fault.

Where I do put fault on Carson, however, is in production in the red zone. I can’t find the numbers right now, but Dave Lapham gave them on the radio broadcast of the ATL game, and they were atrocious. (I want to say it was 6 TDs in almost 20 trips, but I could be wrong.)

Settling for FGs is a great way to lose games, as this season has proved. If the Bengals force it in once instead of kicking a FG against Tampa Bay, they don’t kick a last second field goal because they would still lose by 1. If the Bengals force a TD instead of kicking a FG  just once against Cleveland, the Bengals take home a 24-23 win.

Bottom line, Carson is getting it done in the middle of the field, but he is not at all in the area where it counts most. And that, my friends, is how B+ numbers end up looking like a D+.