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Is the Red Zone Offense the Bengals’ Weakest Link?

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Sep 22, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals running back Giovani Bernard (25) celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the first quarter against the Green Bay Packers at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

The Bengals will have to improve on this if they want to win big games. They cannot afford to leave points on the board any further, as the red zone offense seems extremely predictable. Gruden must utilize the players that he has to their strengths, rather than play it safe in the red zone.

The key for this offense is being balanced, but also being balanced by spreading the ball around. Gresham has looked very good in the passing game, but it seems they aren’t sending him out into the seams as much as they should. In fact, most plays thrown to him are screens or short bootleg passes. Eifert must also be targeted in the seams, rather than the same way as Gresham.

It is mind-boggling to see these tight ends be under-utilized in this offense, especially in the red zone. When your starting tight end has no passes to him in the red zone, adjustments are very much-needed. This red zone offense is an issue, and using the tight ends will definitely help out in scoring, and could also free up AJ Green at times. Mohamed Sanu has great hands and was a force in the red zone last year, so he should see more balls thrown his way, and even crossing routes from the slot. It’s up to Jay Gruden to use these players, and up to Dalton to get it to them.

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