Bengals News

Bengals report card through first quarter of the 2022 season

By Christopher Kokaliares
Miami Dolphins v Cincinnati Bengals
Miami Dolphins v Cincinnati Bengals / Dylan Buell/GettyImages
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Joe Mixon

While Burrow and the passing attack have been able to get it together after a shaky start, the same unfortunately cannot be said for Mixon and the running game.

To put it simply, Joe Mixon has struggled through the first four games, only finding the endzone once in this past game against the Dolphins. It's not because of a lack of effort either, you can clearly see him trying to push and break tackles every time he gets the ball. Though, even with that effort, he can usually only manage 1-2 yards. At the moment, he is only averaging 2.7 yards per carry. Compare that to last year when he was averaging a much better 4.1 yards every attempt.

Some of the blame can be placed on the offensive line, as they haven't done a great job of run blocking, but we can all see that Mixon isn't breaking tackles like he was last season when he had the best year of his career and grabbed his first Pro Bowl nod.

He's been a solid option for Burrow in the receiving game, already with over 100+ receptions yards, but that's not enough to make up for the substandard production on the ground.

Hopefully he picks back up where he left off in 2021, but for now I regrettably have to give Mixon a C- through four games.

Ja'Marr Chase

Chase is also someone who is still getting into the groove of things this season. He started off with a great performance against the Steelers, where he had 10 catches for 129 yards and a game-tying touchdown, but was stifled in the next two games against the Cowboys and Jets where he was only able to rack up 83 yards on 11 receptions.

To be fair, he was up against some really good cornerbacks in those two games, taking on Trevon Diggs and Sauce Gardner in back-to-back weeks. Still, a WR1 needs to be ready to go against some of the best lockdown corners in the game and come out on top.

Chase did have a bit of a bounce back against the Dolphins on Thursday, where he recorded 81 yards with only four catches, almost matching his total yards from the past two games, so it's not something I'm worried about too much. And, as it stands right now, he is sixth in receiving yards, though that should be taken with a grain of salt since he has one more game on almost every other receiver in the league.

Like Burrow, I just want to see Chase be more consistent, something he struggled with a bit last year. Not something to be too alarmed about, considering he also broke a lot of records last season, both franchise and league-wide, just an issue he needs to work on if he wants to be a top 5 receiver in the league.

For now, taking into consideration the competition he's been put up against, I'll give Chase a B after the first quarter of the season.

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