Tee Higgins addresses lack of ‘energy’ in loss to Chargers

Tee Higgins, Cincinnati Bengals. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
Tee Higgins, Cincinnati Bengals. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images) /

In Week 13’s loss to the Los Angeles Chargers, wide receiver Tee Higgins had a feeling the Cincinnati Bengals were doomed from the start.

The inconsistent Chargers were up against a fairly consistent Bengals team (if you count a two-game winning streak as consistent), but Justin Herbert dismantled Cincinnati all too quickly in the beginning of the game.

After the first quarter, Los Angeles led 16-0. Two minutes into the second quarter, the Chargers added another touchdown, leading 24-0.

A three-score deficit against a very good offensive team left the Bengals in a difficult situation for the rest of the game.

On paper, both Cincinnati’s and Los Angeles’ offense seemed equally lethal: the Chargers put their faith in their sixth overall draft pick, Justin Herbert. The Bengals did the same in first overall pick, Joe Burrow.

Cincinnati Bengals’ Tee Higgins laments poor early offensive showing vs. Chargers

The Chargers have top-tier receivers in Mike Williams and Keenan Allen. The Bengals have Higgins, Tyler Boyd, and rookie Ja’Marr Chase.

Cincinnati also sees Los Angeles’ Austin Ekeler and raises them one Joe Mixon. This was predicted to be a high-octane matchup, and it didn’t disappoint.

While Herbert’s side triumphed in the end, with Herbert throwing three touchdowns against one interception, Burrow scored higher in many PFF quarterback categories and could have mustered a successful comeback against Los Angeles, perhaps if he had not injured his finger.

And if the Bengals had not dug themselves in such a deep hole at the beginning.

Higgins, for his part, played the best game of any player in the Bengals’ offense, catching nine passes for 138 yards. He was targeted twice as much as Boyd and helped Cincinnati get its first score in the second quarter.

What followed after Higgins’ score was Zac Taylor’s notorious 2-point conversion fiasco, for which Taylor took full responsibility, but the incident seriously hurt the Bengals’ attempt to build momentum.

Including Week 13, in Cincinnati’s last six games, the team has only scored a first quarter touchdown against two teams, the Browns and the Steelers.

3 winners, 3 losers from Bengals’ odd week 13 loss to Chargers. dark. Next

With five games left to play, the Bengals may need an extra dose of coaching and inspiration to shake off their sluggishness and learn how to win games from the start.