Bengals News

Down With The Brown: 5 Players That Need To Step Up

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The Cincinnati Bengals were just about in cruise control for the division crown and in a hunt for the possible #1 – 2 AFC seed with a win over the Patriots already this year. In as quick as 11 days, two losses turned a team that was cruising, to a team clinging to the division lead with the next division contenders headed to the Jungle. Once gimmie games on the schedule, the Cleveland Browns are no longer a push over. They run the type of defense that is bullying the offense and it’s the same defense that embarrassed them in week 4 at Cleveland.

Bottom line, the Bengals still have a better roster and are at home. They need to take care of business to avoid being in a fight for not just the division, but a playoff spot.  These five players need to step up this week to avoid a three game losing streak going into the bye week.

Players That Need To Step Up:

Aug 17, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden in the third quarter of a preseason game against the Tennessee Titans at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

OC Jay Gruden

Sometimes when you watch this offense and it’s not functioning on all cylinders you don’t know where to start or who to call out. Last week the reality was the offense could have benefited from several things, better quarterback play, better offensive line play, more separation from the receivers, and also better play calling. The third year offensive coordinator has to get better at recognizing what the defense is doing and change the game plan.

He has to recognize that his quarterback is struggling and come up with some easy completions, for example, screens, rollouts adding in some efficient runs. Cleveland will make Andy beat them this week, and in games where Andy Dalton throws over 40 passes he is 2-10 in his career.  Balanced attack equals Bengals win.