Breaking down the Bengals fourth down attempts since 2011

Jared Wickerham

The Cincinnati Bengals have been relatively successful when attempting fourth down conversions over the past two years.

With breaking down the top fourth down plays in NFL history, iconic plays resulting in luck, bad camera angles and really bad defense, we wanted to break down Cincinnati's fourth down production since 2011. Put simply, Cincinnati has converted 17 of 26 fourth down conversions in the past two seasons. Over 60 percent of those attempts have been attempted from within three yards out but four times the Bengals have tried converting a fourth and 11 (or longer).

The Cedric Peerman Conversions.

Against the Jacksonville Jaguars and Kansas City Chiefs, the Bengals brought out the punt team with special teams coach Darrin Simmons rubbing his hands together with a mad scientist tick and laugh. In each case, Cedric Peerman grabbed the re-directed snap and picked up 48 and 32 yards respectively. Surprisingly, in each case the Bengals were within their own 35-yard line.

But the neccesity was based on a need. It wasn't that Cincinnati felt comfortable with a fake, so why not? Cincinnati's offense was struggling and the Bengals turned their attention to other areas to generate some momentum. Even then it didn't help really help. Following a five-yard Green-Ellis run against the Jaguars, Andy Dalton threw consecutive incomplete passes. Thankfully, the latter was the result of defensive pass interference giving Cincinnati a new set of downs and eventual Chris Pressley touchdown reception.

The Favored Targets

Andy Dalton has completed five of 10 passes on fourth down, generating 68 yards receiving. Jermaine Gresham (4) and A.J. Green account for Dalton's nine targets, each generating two receptions for 53 yards receiving.

Jermaine Gresham 4 2 50.0% 29 0
A.J. Green 5 2 40.0% 24 0
Mohamed Sanu 1 1 100.0% 15 0

The Longest Attempt

Against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Bengals had fourth and 22 from the Steelers 33-yard line. Attempting a field goal at Pittsburgh 50 yards just isn't practical and punting the football may net the Bengals some yards -- a touchback would only change field position by 13 yards. Not really worth it.

But on the other hand, there's the whole 22 yards-to-go thing. Dalton launched the football to A.J. Green sown the left sidelines. Surprise, it was incomplete.

The Running Breakdown

Generally speaking, the Bengals have been successful running the football on fourth and one. They've encoutered those situations 10 times, converting eight attempts while scoring twice.

Cedric Peerman 2 80 40.0 0 2
Andy Dalton 3 14 4.67 1 3
BenJarvus Green-Ellis 3 11 3.67 1 3
Brian Leonard 1 5 5.0 0 1
Bruce Gradkowski 1 1 1.0 0 1
Cedric Benson 3 0 0 0 0
Kevin Huber 1 -1 -1.0 0 0
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