Why there’s no cause for concern for the Bengals after Week 8

Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /
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Cincinnati Bengals
Evan McPherson, Clark Harris, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /

Level of Concern with Cincinnati Bengals Special Teams  — 1

Special teams play, with the exception of the Green Bay game, has been very good. The missed field goals from rookie kicker Evan McPherson may come back to haunt the team later in the season, but overall McPherson has been money.

How long has it been since fans have been able to say that? Shayne Graham maybe? That was a lifetime ago.

No longer do fans hold our collective breath every time the ball is snapped to the holder. Not gonna lie, though it seems like a small thing, that’s a pretty good feeling. Historically the Bengals have either had accurate kickers that couldn’t hit outside 40 yards (Jim Breech), or boomers that couldn’t be trusted (Neil Rackers).

It seems like it shouldn’t be difficult to find a kicker that can do both. (Jake Elliot). However, the aforementioned Elliot was cut during preseason and went on to win a Super Bowl in Philadelphia. Hopefully McPherson can hold down this role in Cincinnati for years to come.

The punting game, as always is in good hands with Kevin Huber, but the punt return aspect leaves a bit to be desired. Darius Phillips likes to run sideline to sideline and generally doesn’t just turn it upfield and get what he can get.

Phillips is a far cry from Pac-Man Jones, but as long as he doesn’t put the ball on the ground, we can deal with his underperformance in that role.