CINCINNATI, OH - NOVEMBER 27: Andy Dalton #14 of the Cincinnati Bengals runs the ball during a play against the Cleveland Browns at Paul Brown Stadium on November 27, 2011 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Tyler Barrick/Getty Images)
Good morning everyone. It's Thursday which means the work week is almost over. Only one day left until your day can be filled with relaxation and football. Two days of football. Well that's the ideal weekend for most of us.
The Bengals have five games remaining this season and are currently in decent shape to make the playoffs, granted it would appear as if they would be the sixth seed. But being in the playoffs is better than not being in it at all and considering none of us expected the Bengals to contend for the playoffs this season. to In order for the Bengals to make it though, it would appear as if they will have to win at least three more games. And it's rational to believe that the Bengals will win at least three more games.
After the Bengals play the Steelers this week they will have the Houston Texans, St. Louis Rams, Arizona Cardinals, and Baltimore Ravens to round out the season. Arizona and St. Louis are a combined 6-16 up to this point while Baltimore and Houston are a combined 16-6.
The Cardinals have been far too inconsistent this season and Kevin Kolb hasn't been nearly as good as analysts were making him out to be. He's thrown just as many interceptions as he has touchdowns. I thought Arizona was suppose to be better after acquiring him? Wasn't he suppose to shine after getting out of Philadelphia where he was stuck behind Donovan McNabb and Michael Vick? So far he hasn't looked like anything special.
As for Sam Bradford of the Rams, he seems to have taken a step or two backwards. After having an impressive rookie season where he passed for 18 touchdowns and 3,512 yards, he has only managed to pass for six touchdowns and a hair under 2,000 yards in nine games this season. One major concern is his ability to hold onto the football. He's fumbled the ball six times already in just nine games. He had that many fumbles all of last season. Simply put, he hasn't looked the same.
Cincinnati's next home game is against Houston and now that Matt Schaub is out for the season along with his replacement Matt Leinart, they are probably going to be relying on the recently signed Jake Delhomme to lead them to
victory. Texans fans should worry about their playoff chances with him as their quarterback. Over the past two seasons he has thrown 25 interceptions compared to only 10 touchdowns.
The games that concern me the most are against the Steelers and Ravens. The Bengals already know what those two teams bring to the table. And they will have to step up their game if they want to win either of those matches. But if they lose both and win out against the Texans, Rams, and Cardinals then the Bengals are still in decent shape to creep into the playoffs.
Alright here is a look at what you may have missed or overlooked from Wednesday.
- There are rumors circulating around that link Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden to some head coaching positions.
- Check out the injury and practice report for the Bengals and Steelers.
- If the Bengals intend to come out victorious on Sunday then their pass rush will have to step up their game against Pittsburgh.
- Andy Dalton continues to impress everyone around the league, even Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger who believes Dalton should be Rookie of the Year.
- Bengals defensive tackle Geno Atkins has been nominated for the AFC Player of the Week.
- The Bengals are clinging onto their playoff hopes and their schedule appears to have a few more obstacles compared to the Ravens and Steelers. The other teams in the hunt seem to be facing more of an uphill battle compared to the Bengals. The strength of schedule for the teams that remain in the hunt is going to be vital.
- Check out the Bengals top-five defensive plays from this past Sunday's game against the Cleveland Browns.
- In the latest NFL power rankings the Bengals continue to hover around the top-10.
- The offensive and defensive snap count against the Browns.