ICYMI: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

4 of 10

The Defense – Overall, the defense had a decent game. They didn’t surrender a drive of more than 60 yards and of the 30 points, the defense was only responsible for 16 (1 TD and 3 FGs). Without the special teams blunders, the Bengals win this game.

  1. 1 Sack – The Bengals now have just 1 sack in the last 2 weeks against 2 offensive lines that have allowed 70 sacks on the year. That is discouraging and concerning for a team that greatly needs a pass rush to hide the injuries in the secondary.
  1. 1 Turnover – Along with the discouraging sack totals is the 1 turnover in last 2 games – and that one turnover was an interception that pinned the Bengals at their own 2 yard line and resulted in a 5 play series, a short punt by Nugent and a short field for the Steelers which resulted in a FG. Given the issues the Bengals have had scoring at times, the offense could use some help by the defense giving them some short fields. One short field on Sunday night could have given the Bengals a chance at a comeback.
  1. Guys Named Dre Kirkpatrick – It is becoming more and more apparent (and more and more disappointing) why Kirkpatrick has had problems cracking the starting lineup. His night started with a 15 yard face mask penalty on the first play of the game which allowed the Steelers to flip the field position on the Bengals which resulted in the dropped punt. Also, according to Pro Football Focus, he was credited with 4 missed tackles – including an embarrassing attempt where he was hurdled by Le’Veon Bell.
  1. Tackling – For the first 12 weeks, the Bengals had been a very sound tackling team. For the last 2, they have not. While, I am not going to over react and start panicking over what seems like a 2 week blip, but I am starting to become worried.