Three Bengals who failed to step up vs the Chargers

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Jan 5, 2014; Cincinnati, OH, USA; San Diego Chargers wide receiver Eddie Royal (11) jumps over Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Michael Johnson (93) during the third quarter of the AFC wild card playoff football game at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Michael Johnson

The franchise player failed to show any reason to warrant a huge contract this year, doing his best Robert Geathers impression. He should have taken the contract that was offered to Carlos Dunlap.

He recorded 1 tackle in the San Diego game, no sacks, 1 QB pressure, no batted passes and 1 tackle.  Johnson might be resigned but it’s clear that his backup Wallace Gillberry is a more productive player on a snap to snap basis.

While Johnson is a great run-defender (No. 2 DE in run defense via Pro Football Focus), he failed to even make an impact in that department as Chargers running backs repeatedly gashed the Bengals up the middle and on the outside.

Speaking of which, Johnson’s -1.0 grade by PFF was his third-worst of the season. Bad time to play your worst football.

I could see a team like Atlanta or Jacksonville chasing Johnson’s 10 sacks from year ago, but unless they have a dominate defensive tackle Johnson will become another free agent bust if a team thinks he will get 10 sacks a season.

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