+ Bengals running back Brian Leonard is a stud. Ask any Bengals fan what they think, and the word stud or any acceptable variation (studlier than the studliest stud) will be waged in a war that face palms the English language. Leonard has touched the football 33 times this season, posting 256 yards from scrimmage with 14 of those 33 touches turning into first downs (42.4%).
Yet I was more curious how he does specifically on third downs. So I put our intern Ryan Harper on the case, digging through every game book and calculating the amount of times Leonard touched the football on third downs. Of the 17 attempts (carries and receptions), Leonard posted a 41.2% conversion (7 conversions) with his best came coming against the Indianapolis Colts, converting three of four third downs into first downs.
More impressively during our orgy-sized man crush for Leonard is that he's converted seven of his previous 10 third down opportunities in the past six games combined. Really I'm only telling you what you already know: When in doubt on third down, give it to Leonard.
+ Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden's name keeps surfacing from a conjecturing media about head coaching vacancies anywhere from college football, the NFL to a firm Vice President nomination the upcoming Republican primaries. While he does have head coaching experience and his promotion to head coach isn't that hard to fathom and even though though he's spent eight years in the NFL as a coaching assistant, we still have a hard time believing that the general interest, at least amongst NFL teams, results from his work after only 11 games in the NFL.
That being said the interest could scent strongly from Jacksonville, in Geoff Hobson speculation:
It’s not just an idle report because Prisco lives in Jacksonville, covered the Jags forever at the Florida Times-Union, and still has good ties to the club. Plus, connect the dots. Jags general manager Gene Smith and Gruden’s father are both Heidelberg College football guys.
And it makes sense. Gruden and his staff have done a remarkable job with rookie quarterback Andy Dalton, while in Jacksonville franchise QB Blaine Gabbert, the guy the Bengals thankfully passed at No. 4 for A.J. Green, is backsliding.
On one hand I don't want to see him go. Since coming to the Bengals, he's integrated an offense with a rookie quarterback and wide receiver while dealing with a five-month NFL lockout that prevented communication with players.
On the other hand, it is cool that both of Cincinnati's coordinators are generating interest outside of Cincinnati. Yet if we found these great coaches before, there's no reason that Marvin Lewis, who we suspect has his greatest control over his coaching staff since being hired in 2003, couldn't find guys that would fit to keep this train rolling.
+ Browns linebacker Scott Fujita was placed on Injured Reserve following Cincinnati's 23-20 win last Sunday. We're not exactly sure when it happened, but: