Bengals 2016 Defense: Is There A Character Flaw?

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Jan 9, 2016; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis talks to outside linebacker Vontaze Burfict (55) during the third quarter against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Wild Card playoff football game at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 9, 2016; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis talks to outside linebacker Vontaze Burfict (55) during the third quarter against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Wild Card playoff football game at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports /
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Bengals 2016 Defense
Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports /

First Line of Defense

The Bengals defensive line has been a masterpiece to watch over the last few years. The four-headed monster of Carlos Dunlap, Domata Peko, Geno Atkins and Michael Johnson will continue to paint the field with the blood of opposing offenses this year as well.  With new Defensive Line coach Jacob Burney vowing to increase the rotation on the defensive line, there should be fewer injuries and fresher legs all year.

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The only weakness in the interior could be Peko who seems to struggle in run support at times.  Even so, the Bengals have Marcus Hardison and Andrew Billings to rotate in throughout the year.  Look for better production from Peko all around as he has the ability to stay fresher, longer.

On the edge, Michael Johnson is the weaker link but has the athletic ability to adapt.  Carlos Dunlap is a beast that will require constant chipping and double teams.  The extra help for Dunlap will allow Johnson many opportunities to make plays on the edge.  In 2012, Johnson looked like an athletic marvel and has a chance to regain that look this year opposite Dunlap.

With a revamped secondary the Bengals D will need defensive ends to push up the field and force early throws.  Expect an exciting year from the Bengals Defensive Line, inside and out.

Next: Back That Thing Up

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