The usual suspects will command most of the attention as the Cincinnati Bengals prepare to take on the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday Night Football. However, some under-the-radar contributions must be made by unsung heroes. Here are a few candidates who could be for the Bengals on Sunday night.
Trent Taylor has an opportunity to leave his mark on this game as a punt returner. Baltimore’s rookie punter, Jordan Stout, averages 46.7 yards per punt. That ranks him 17th in the NFL. However, when it comes to net yardage, he averages 39.9 yards per punt, which is the fourth worst league.
These numbers signal that yards can be gained in the punt game with an explosive returner like Taylor. He could flip field position on one play which could be critical in the outcome of what should be a close game.
On the season, Taylor is averaging 10.78 yards per return, which lands him at seventh best on average in the league. However, he has yet to break off an incredibly lengthy return even though his long of 23 against the Dolphins ranks as the eighth longest in the NFL so far this year.
Taylor must be ready to have a big game. He has a chance to improve on those numbers when receiving punts from Stout, especially if Cincinnati’s defense can force Baltimore’s offense into several punting situations.