The Cincinnati Bengals haven't lost a game since early November, thanks to a combination of many things.
BENGALS RUSHING OFFENSE
Over the duration of Cincinnati's ongoing winning streak, the Bengals have upped the ante with their offensive philosophy. Dating back to the New York Giants, the Bengals have generated 614 yards rushing on 132 carries for a 4.7 yard/rush average during the team's four-game winning streak. BenJarvus Green-Ellis is a significant reason why, posting three consecutive 100-yard rushing performances, averaging over five yards per carry. If he hits 100 yards against the Dallas Cowboys this weekend, he'll be only the second player in franchise history do it four consecutive times (Paul Robinson, 1968).
|Week 9||Week 14|
|Yards Rushing||95.9 Yards/Game||115.1 Yards/Game|
Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said during Monday's presser.
"Running the football, we continue to do a better job. We’ve got to keep working hard at it, keep creating space and movement, have better perimeter blocking, and have better opportunities all the way around. On third down, we have to keep working hard at it. It’s become a strength, but we have to stay after it and keep the execution level up."
THIRD DOWN A STRENGTH
Due to the aforementioned rushing offense that's lowering the overall to-go average during third down opportunities, the Bengals third down conversions have vastly improved as a direct result.
Since losing to the Denver Broncos, they've increased their third down conversions from 29 percent to 35 percent, including back-to-back games with a 50 percent conversion rate or higher. The last time Cincinnati converted a third down conversion of 50 percent or higher in consecutive games was in 2007 against the Cardinals and Titans.
Quarterback Andy Dalton has thrown a touchdown in every game this year, save for the regular season opener against the Baltimore Ravens. But Dalton hasn't had a stretch of games like he's having during Cincinnati's winning streak.
Since November 11 against the New York Giants, Dalton has thrown for 10 touchdowns and rushed for two more giving him 12 touchdowns in the past 16 quarters. With the upcoming game against the Dallas Cowboys, we should point out that Dalton is 2-0 against the NFC this year, throwing seven touchdowns and only one interception.
THE PASS RUSH
Opposing quarterbacks view Cincinnati's pass rush as Batman would Bane. In each of the past four games, the Bengals pass rush has generated four quarterback sacks, giving them 16 during the team's winning streak. Additionally, during the same span, the Bengals have generated 18 (additional) hits on the quarterback and 57 pressures, including 22 against Philip Rivers on Sunday.
They've stepped it up and it shows. Opposing offenses have converted only 26.5 percent of their third downs and the New York Giants are the only team to generate over 300 yards on offense. But most important, the Bengals are allowing only 10.5 points per game during the streak.
Bengals defense during four-game winning streak.
|Points||T. Yards||Pass||Rush||3rd Downs|
|New York Giants||13||318||189||129||35.7%|
|Kansas City Chiefs||6||284||171||113||9.1%|
|San Diego Chargers||13||297||251||46||33.3%|