New look Cincinnati Bengals to open playbook; scoring is key

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May 30, 2017; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton (14) throws a pass in the pocket during the Week 2 OTAs at the Cincinnati Bengals training facility. Mandatory Credit: Sam Greene/Cincinnati Enquirer via USA TODAY NETWORK
May 30, 2017; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton (14) throws a pass in the pocket during the Week 2 OTAs at the Cincinnati Bengals training facility. Mandatory Credit: Sam Greene/Cincinnati Enquirer via USA TODAY NETWORK /
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The Bengals’ new look allows coaches to open up playbooks on both sides of the ball. Scoring is key and there should be more of it this year.

It’s no secret the Bengals have gotten younger and faster this offseason. But, the true story is the players who will take on roles we haven’t seen from the team. The first player–and one I’m very excited about this year–is Carl Lawson. He’s a strong but very athletic linebacker who can do it all. Lawson will take on a “Von Miller” type of roll, per Vontaze Burfict.

Through minicamp and OTAs , the Bengals have been using lots of different looks with Lawson and Nick Vigil in at linebacker. They’ve been sending blitzers–such as George Iloka–from the safety position. This is possible because the younger, more athletic linebackers (Vigil, Lawson) are able to drop in coverage.

Also, with Lawson’s pass rush ability, we will see more looks with a linebacker lined up outside of the defensive ends. Carl Lawson also allows Bengals coaches to put him at defensive end and move a quicker pass rusher inside on 3rd down to beat guards.

Also, with Lawson’s pass rush ability, we will see more looks with a linebacker lined up outside of the defensive ends. Carl Lawson also allows Bengals coaches to put him at defensive end and move a quicker pass rusher inside on 3rd down to beat guards.

Cincinnati Bengals
Cincinnati Bengals /

Cincinnati Bengals

What’s Happening With The Offense?

All offseason, we have been hearing about John Ross and Joe Mixon and what they will bring to the offense. It’s true. Joe Mixon will create a huge headache for opposing defenses. He can run between tackles and catch out of the backfield. He can line up as a running back, motion to the slot and run routes like a receiver. He’s truly the total package.

John Ross is the fastest player the Bengals have ever had. Ross’ speed will surely bring some big plays and open up the middle of the field for intermediate routes. If Tyler Eifert stays healthy, he should have a huge year facing a lot of one-on-ones with Green and Ross on the outside. Another person who will benefit will be Tyler Boyd. Boyd will need to take advantage of the single coverage he will surely see.

When They Get In The Red Zone

Last year, the Bengals averaged 20.3 points per game which landed them at 24th in the league. That number will be significantly better as long as they stay healthy. With more playmakers and getting back their big targets (Tyler Eifert, A.J. Green) things should turn around for Cincy.

Next: Top 3 Breakout Candidates

Add 6’3″ Josh Malone to a 6’3″ Brandon LaFell or 6’4″ Green with 6’5″ Eifert, and Dalton will have huge targets in the red zone. But, the Bengals won’t need to get to the red zone to score. With home run hitter Green and newly added playmakers Ross and Mixon, any play can go the distance. Andy Dalton‘s weapons resemble what Matt Ryan had last year, and they led the league in scoring at 33.8 points per game.

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