The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Week 16

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The Bad

Unlike last week, the “Bad” and the “Ugly” was very limited. I guess that is to be expected in 42-14 victories.

Dec 22, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Jerome Simpson (81) and Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick (27) and strong safety George Iloka (43) fight to catch the ball in the second quarter of the game at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowksi-USA TODAY Sports

Dre Kirkpatrick – I have to keep reminding myself he is basically a rookie with just a few games under his belt, but he is starting to feel like a bust. There is a transition to the NFL speed and schemes, etc, but covering and tackling is the same at all levels and right now, Kirkpatrick looks bad at both.

On Sunday he was abused on a double move by the lethal combo of Jarius Wright and Matt Cassel, and later in the game, he was beaten badly by the Pro Bowler Jerome Simpson – if not for a poor throw by Cassel, that would have been the second deep TD of the game given up by Dre.

Regardless, he should have been called for PI because he assaulted Simpson before the ball got there. I will give him a bit more time, but Newman can’t get back soon enough.

Explosive Plays – While the defense played well as a whole, I didn’t like seeing them give up two touchdowns of 30+ yards (36 and 35). If not for the back of the endzone, Wright and Patterson may still be running.

The Bengals have been great at limiting big plays this year, but 2 by the Vikings is concerning because against good teams, an entire game of good defense can be wiped out by 1 explosive play like that. Concerning when entering the playoffs.