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About last night... Bengals fall to 0-3.

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By 4 p.m. today, the Bengals must cut four players to bring their roster down to 75 players. The roster must be trimmed to 53 players by Saturday. So we'll see a reduction of 26 players in less than a week.

About last night

Last night's sudden drop off on the site was largely due to internet connection issues I had. It happens.

First off, injuries

It was reported during last night's game that Shayne Graham suffered a hip pointer. He didn't come back after that. However, Lewis said Graham would have come back during a regular season game and Graham said it should be alright. As for signing another place kicker: "We'll see".
[Curnutte's blog]

Dexter Jackson suffered a concussion in a collision against the beast tight end, Alge Crumpler. Jackson probably won't play Friday against the Colts in preseason game #4.

However..

Levi Jones says he feels good after last night's action and Willie Anderson will start taking practice snaps Wednesday anticipating game snaps Friday.
[Bengals.com]

Through the numbers

(if it doesn't say preseason, then it's reflective of Monday's game)

2 - Sacks by John Thornton
2.3
- Yards per carry the Bengals rush defense allowed.
3.6 - Average sacks per game by the Bengals defense in the preseason.
4 - Three and outs by the Bengals offense.
4 - Three and outs by the Falcons offense.
4 - Rushing touchdowns allowed by the Bengals defense - 30th in NFL.
4.8 - Yards per carry by Rudi Johnson for the first three games of the preseason.
5 - Sacks by the Bengals defense.
5.1 - Yards per carry by the Bengals offense.
9 - Penalties by the Bengals.
10 - Receptions by Chris Henry during the preseason -- 8th best in NFL.
10 - Receptions that picked up first downs by Chris Henry -- 4th best in NFL.
11 - Total sacks by the Bengals defense in the preseason -- 2nd best.
11.1 - Average yards returned on punt -- 6th in NFL.
17 - Plays on the Bengals touchdown drive (3rd) Monday night that covered 88 yards.
17.1 - Average return on kickoff -- tied for worst in NFL.
23:06 - Time of possession by the Falcons offense in the second half.
28 - Average starting position by the Bengals offense.
34.8% - Third down conversions by the Bengals offense in the preseason.
35.1% - Third down conversions allowed by the Bengals defense this preseason.
101.7 - Passer rating for the preseason by opposing quarterbacks -- 30th in NFL.
309.3 - Yards passing allowed, per game, by the Bengals defense this preseason -- 31st in NFL.

Third down conversions

Bengals Sit. Result   Falcons Sit. Result
1 3-9-ATL44 Incomplete to T.J. Punt.   1 3-15-ATL16 Run to Dunn. Punt.
2 3-9-CIN42 Palmer sacked. Punt..   2 3-1-CIN33 Run to Dunn, 5-yard gain.
3 3-13-CIN38 Palmer completes 22-yard pass to Chad.   3 3-19-ATL9 Run by Norwood for 2 yards.
4 3-5-ATL35 Incomplete pass to Tab Perry.   4 3-10-ATL30 Incomplete to Horn.
5 3-6-ATL25 13-yard run by Watson.   5 3-4-ATL38 Norwood run for 5 yards.
6 3-6-ATL8 TOUCHDOWN, 8-yard to Chad.   6 3-4-ATL46 Harrington complete pass to Horn for 11 yards.
7 3-5-ATL49 Incomplete to Chad.   7 3-8-CIN41 Harrington completes 18 yard pass to Jenkins
8 3-8-CIN33 Incomplete to T.J.   8 3-6-CIN19 Incomplete pass to Horn.
9 3-6-CIN31 Palmer sacked. Punt   9 3-5-CIN36 Incomplete pass to Marshall.
10 3-15-CIN14 Johnson completes 14-yard pass to Watson.   10 3-3-CIN48 Redman completes 3-yard pass to Jennings
11 3-6-CIN47 Interception.   11 3-16-CIN29 Redman sacked. Missed FG attempt.
12 3-2-CIN11 Johnson completes 4-yard pass to Henry.   12 3-12-50 Bramlet incomplete pass to Milner. Punt.
13 3-11-CIN14 Incomplete pass to Kays.   13 3-5-CIN47 Edwards run, one yard loss.

Penalties (9 for 73 yards)

  • Curtis Brown, personal foul, face mask. Push the Falcons from the ATL27 to the ATL42.
  • Chris Henry, false start. Pushed the Bengals from 3-10-CIN19 to 3-15-CIN14. Johnson completed 14-yard pass on third down, but the Bengals had to punt on 4-1-CIN28.
  • Marvin White, pass interference. Penalty went 17 yards and the ball at the one. Falcons scored a rushing touchdown two plays later.
  • Lemar Marshall lined up in the neutral zone.
  • Andrew Whitworth, false start on third down. This time, Palmer completed a 22-yard pass converting the first down.
  • Bobbie Williams, illegal use of hands. The 10-yard penalty took the Bengals from 2-7-CIN44 to 2-17-CIN34. The irony here is that if there was no foul, Rudi Johnson's run lost two yards therefore setting up a 3-9. Instead, after the Williams penalty, Rudi picked up nine yards.
  • Madieu Williams, illegal contact.
  • Andrew Whitworth, false start on third down. Went from 3rd-and-4 to 3rd-and-9. No conversion, Bengals punt.
  • Caleb Miller, illegal block above the waist on opening kickoff return.

Red Zone (2/2)

The Bengals offense found the Red Zone twice -- and scored touchdowns twice.

  • With 3:28 left in the first quarter, Carson Palmer engineered a 17-play, 88-yard touchdown drive that took 9:53 to complete. The Bengals entered the end-zone on the 14th play of the drive with about 10 minutes left in the first half. On the drive, Rudi Johnson rushed six times for 26 yards and Palmer completed six of eight passes for 44 yards.
  • With 2:54 left in the first half, after a 29-yard studly punt by the Falcons punter, Palmer wasted no time hooking up with a wide open Chad Johnson for 31 yards. Johnson ran a slant than go causing DeAngelo Hall to stumble freeing up Chad over the top. After a 2-yard run by Rudi Johnson, Palmer zipped a fast ball to Daniel Coats for the touchdown.

Hello, ESPN. There's actually a football game being played...

You almost got the impression last night that the game being played in the background was an inconvenience. Mike Tirico, a whore for controversial topics, ensured the coverage was dictated by Michael Vick. I know the Vick coverage was expected. I was more hopeful that the eight hours of coverage preceding the game would, you know, enable less Vick coverage during the game. Vick is no longer an NFL player -- therefore it's my contention he shouldn't be brought up during the game. Nor should they have glorified the guy with countless tributes of his pre-guilty NFL career. That's why we have Outside the Lines and to a lesser degree, SportsCenter.

I'm not one that constantly beats the drum of bashing the media. And I won't bash Ron Jaworski -- he was the one that would actually talk about the game more often than not. But the coverage last night was just awful. Agreed so by Awful Announcing.

I'd love to tell you that I stuck it out for the sake of the site, but that's not the case. The moment I saw Chris Mortensen (while being interviewed by Michele Tafoya) talk over an amazing touchdown by Jerious Norwood (1:50 Mark), I started watching Enemy of the State on cable.

The Vick coverage started yesterday at 9am and didn't end until almost midnight. You knew it was coming (hell the producers even told us ahead of time), but I would have really loved to have watched some Football last night. They so could have wrapped up all the discussion at halftime and just moved on.

Everything was just too much last night. The legal analyst, Mort, the African-American lady that Suzy Kolber interviewed for 14 minutes, Tony getting mad because Chad Johnson didn't celebrate a TD in the preseaon, etc, etc. It never ended.

ESPN has set MNF up to fail, but again....we already knew that. And can we please get rid of the term "Dress Rehearsal"? Any game that has a TD from Ovie Mughelli is not a "Dress Rehearsal"....it's a crappy preseason game.

Tom Niehaus did what I did. Muted the television with the radio guys filling in.

Digressions in Abundance had this rather comedic post.

But here's the thing that bothered me about last night. I'm sitting there trying to enjoy some Michael Vick analysis, minding my own business. And every once in a while they would start talking about the football game that was being played on the field in front of them! Ridiculous! I didn't turn on Monday Night Football to watch and hear about football!! I turned on Monday Night Football to watch and hear about Michael Vick.

Other Bengals bloggers.

Bengals Fall to Falcons 24-19 in Atlanta [Bengals Gab]
Pass Blocking and Pass Coverage Struggle As Bengals Lose 24-19 [The Bengal Blitz]
MNF: Vick Is Going To Jail! Oh, there was a football game? [Bengal Stripes]

Other points

Hartwell healthy, happy as Bengal [AJC]
Bengals Get Bungled: The Wrap [Falcoholic]