CINCINNATI, OH - DECEMBER 11: Andy Dalton #14 of the Cincinnati Bengals throws a pass during the NFL game against Houston Texansat Paul Brown Stadium on December 11, 2011 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Good morning Bengals Nation. It's Thursday which means the work week is coming to an end. Only two days until total freedom from stacks of paperwork, coworkers, and clients. What more could one ask for? How about a Bengals playoff birth. One can hope, right?
Alright the Bengals take on the Rams this week in St. Louis. This is a game that the Bengals SHOULD win. Not only is this a game they should win, but it's one where they should destroy and bury the Rams early in the game. This isn't a game that the Bengals should be forced to make a fourth quarter comeback. The Rams only have two wins for Pete's sake.
On Sunday I expect the Bengals to come out firing against the Rams' defense. St. Louis has the worst run defense in the league and the Bengals must take advantage of that. Somehow they have a pretty good pass defense, so if the Bengals want to increase their chances of winning they maybe should pound away with their running attack. But of course that means Cedric Benson and Bernard Scott have to show up for the entire game and not just one half. Or maybe the Bengals could incorporate more plays that involve Brian Leonard. It's just an idea.
As for the passing game, I'm not worried about Andy Dalton. He has done an adequate job during his rookie campaign. Sure he has made some rookie mistakes, but he's also made countless plays that one wouldn't expect to see from a rookie. That's all part of the growing process for a rookie. I'm more concerned with Jerome Simpson and Andre Caldwell. Both of them have been hit or miss this season. Either they have an explosive game or they are completely shutout. That cannot happen this week against St. Louis.
The Bengals defense should have a field day against the Rams offense. The Rams passing game ranks 28th in the league with an average of 184 yards per game and their running game ranks 26th with 99.8 yards per game. It's been rather surprising considering Sam Bradford had a respectable rookie season, but he's been struggling with his accuracy this season. He's only completed 53.5 percent of his passes this season compared to the 60 percent he completed last season. The Bengals should be able to hold him to less than 200 yards passing on Sunday. In all honesty I expect the Bengals to hold the Rams to fewer than 250 yards of total offense.
Alright here is what you may have missed or overlooked from Wednesday.
- The injury and practice report for the Bengals and Rams. Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap finally returned to practice.
- In order for the Bengals to obtain their eighth win of the season they are going to need to run the ball.
- Cincy Jungle's Week 14 MVP is......
- It's time for the Week 14 Caption Contest.
- Bengals kicker Mike Nugent has been nominated for AFC Special Teams Player of the Week.
- The Bengals offensive and defensive snap count against the Houston Texans.