Cincinnati Bengals: 3 keys to victory vs. Packers in Week 5
2. Ja’Marr Chase needs to get loose against a banged-up secondary
One unquestionable advantage for the Bengals heading into Sunday is their receivers against a thin secondary. The Packers are dealing with so many injuries across their roster, their cornerbacks are especially taking a hit.
The star cornerback Jaire Alexender is not going to play as he is trying to avoid a season-ending injury right now. Their opposite starting boundary corner Kevin King has been a limited participant in practice this week, likely making his status questionable or a game-time decision.
You could make the case that Ja’Marr Chase is already Cincinnati’s best receiver, which is saying a lot considering their deep unit. Chase is going to demand some double-teams or safety help in single-coverage here soon if he continues his high level of play. He is also one of the best deep threats in the NFL right now.
Burrow is throwing a beautiful deep ball as well, making Chase very dangerous. Green Bay will get burned by Chase if they decide to risk guarding him one-on-one. The Packers already play a fair share of zone coverage, but that could increase with injuries in the secondary. Depending on the type of zone coverage, Chase has the ability to find porous spots in the coverage or can break the top off the defense.
Chase having another big day is a rather safe bet if Burrow can exploit this injured secondary. While the rookie receiver has been great, he has not had that jaw-dropping, straight dominant performance. What I mean by that is putting up well over 100 receiving yards or having 8+ receptions, and ultimately forcing defenses to adjust around your imposing force.
The benefits of a wide receiver putting on a show are obvious. Making any defense adjust to a player is huge for an offense. This would almost guarantee Cincy would have a fluid passing attack all afternoon. If Chase is to be given more attention due to his sheer dominance, Tee Higgins, Tyler Boyd, and C.J. Uzomah are going to eat themselves.
Chase has the chance to explode this weekend, proving again, he is a star-in-the-making.