Bengals Have Missed Too Many Turnover Opportunities
Oct 26, 2014; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Adam Jones (24) intercepts a pass during the third quarter against the Baltimore Ravens at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
The corners were the life of the party last year when it came to controlling high powered offenses. Adam Jones and Dre Kirkpatrick led the team with three interceptions each while Terence Newman had two. Their penchant for ball-hawking made opposing quarterbacks think twice about throwing to any receiver. But that is not the case this year. In fact, the corners have produced only two interceptions on the year thus far. That isn’t to say they haven’t had missed opportunities though.
In fact, Adam Jones has had his hands on the ball nine times and has only come up with one interception. This while Terence Newman has touched the ball eight times and dropped several interceptions. Not every one of those pass deflections was a dropped interception, but several were. There have been a number of takeaway opportunities that have been missed because of the 17+ touches they have had.
The Bengals safeties are picking up a portion of the slack as they have combined for five interceptions, but that doesn’t mean that these missed opportunities couldn’t have changed a game or two. Interceptions kill drives and, more importantly, change momentum; something the Bengals could’ve used at several points this year. If they could have taken away a ball early on in the Browns game or gotten an extra takeaway in the Carolina game, who is to say that the outcome couldn’t have been different? Not to say that their play is all bad, they have kept the yards allowed per snap down according to Cincy Jungle contributor Brennen Warner.
It is key to remember, one play does not win a game, but it can spark a sputtering team or inspire teammates while discouraging an opponent. Turnovers are also vital when you consider how poor the Bengals’ offense has looked at times; they certainly could use the extra possessions and hence, opportunities. The Bengals are lucky at this point to have broken even regarding turnovers considering the abundance of offensive mistakes recently. Going forward, if they can convert more turnovers, they would undoubtedly give themselves a better opportunity to win ballgames and possibly improve their position within the most competitive division in the NFL.