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Bengals struggling run defense faces surging Mark Ingram

The Bengals must stop Mark Ingram to have any hope of containing the high-scoring Saints offense.

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Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

The Bengals have one of the worst defenses in football. They currently sit at No. 20  in pass defense and No. 31 in run defense and are desperately seeking improvement as they hit s three-game road trip.

The bad news is the red-hot Saints offense is on deck. New Orleans sports the NFL's No. 6 scoring offense, averaging 27.9 points per game. The Bengals have allowed 86 combined points in three road games this year, an average of 28.7 per game.

The Saints' 27.9 point per contest jumps to 31.3 per game at home, and much of that has to do with a vastly improved run game. One of the best NFL running backs (when healthy) this year has surprisingly been Mark Ingram. In just six games, Ingram has rushed for 551 yards and six scores, but it's his recent stretch of games that's opening eyes. Ingram rushed for 392 yards and three scores over his past three outings, an average of 130.1 yards per game.

Playing in a contract year, Ingram will have a favorable matchup against a Bengals defense that's allowing 143 rushing yards per contest. Needless to say, Ingram is in for a big day if the game script allows the Saints to keep getting him the ball for four quarters.

It's up to the Bengals to make sure he doesn't have a big day and keep the Saints offense moving the chains like teams have done easily vs. Cincinnati with ease this year.

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