PITTSBURGH, PA - DECEMBER 04: Bernard Scott #28 of the Cincinnati Bengals look for running room in front of Cameron Heyward #97 of the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field on December 4, 2011 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Pittsburgh won the game 35-7. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Good morning Bengals Nation. It's time to rise and shine. It's Friday which means many things. It's finally the end of the work week, nothing but relaxation for the next two days (hopefully), beer, football, more beer, and other awesome shenanigans.
With four games remaining the Bengals are hanging onto a fringe lead in the wild card. As it stands they will probably have to win three of their four remaining games. And it all starts this Sunday with the Houston Texans.
The Bengals will have their hands full as they go up against one of the best running games in the league. Led by Arian Foster and Ben Tate, the Texans running game averages a jaw-dropping 152.6 yards per game, third best in the league. Yikes is all I have to say that. The Texans rely heavily on the running game and the Bengals defense will have to limit the amount of damage that Foster and Tate compile. The Bengals run defense has done a great job at containing the run. Currently the Bengals' run defense is ranked sixth in the league allowing an average of 96.3 yards per game. The Bengals may have to allow fewer yards than that if they want to secure a win.
The Bengals will have to be able to stop the Texans offensive attack altogether. And the Bengals' defense is more than capable of doing that. They should be able to do that considering the Texans have rookie T.J. Yates starting at quarterback, but he does have some viable targets in wide receiver Andre Johnson and tight end Owen Daniels. Those are two players that the Bengals secondary must cover. They can't leave them open because if either of those players gets an opening to catch the ball they will. And that will kill the Bengals if their secondary continues its habit of leaving opponents open.
Another thing that would help is if the Bengals make tackles right away instead of making initial contact near the line of scrimmage or where ever the ball is thrown to to only let the receiver gain an extra five or six yards because they were unable to complete the tackle. That's going to kill the Bengals if they don't wrap up their tackles immediately. Alright that's enough of my rant for the day.
Alright here is what you may have missed or overlooked from Thursday.
- Check out our weekly podcast.
- The practice and injury report for the Bengals and Texans. Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap missed yet another practice.
- Has Mike Zimmer's fuse finally blown? He's threatening to bench players unless they start creating more turnovers. Maybe that will light the fire for the Bengals defense.
- Even though defensive tackle Pat Sims is out for the season the Bengals should make a strong effort to resign him.
- It's time for the Week 13 Caption Contest.
- Here is the third quarter report card for the season.
- Check out the results from a Twitter flash poll as to why fans aren't buying Bengals tickets.