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Let’s get professional: Great craftsmanship can come from a beautiful drive, a well-executed blitz, or even a high-arcing punt that pins a team down on the one. GMC takes great pride in the craftsmanship of its vehicles. At the quarter mark of the season, what has been the most well-crafted aspect of your team so far?
Without a doubt, it's Cincinnati's defense.
Currently, the Cincinnati Bengals are the top-ranked scoring defense in the NFL, allowing only 33 total points and an average 11.0 points per game. Ranked second are the Arizona Cardinals and Detroit Lions, both of whom have allowed 45 points... or 12 points more than the Bengals.
And the Bengals have done it without defensive end Michael Johnson, currently in Tampa Bay, all-star linebacker Vontaze Burfict, who's been dealing with concussions and the All-Pro-version of defensive tackle Geno Atkins, who is slowly regaining his confidence from last year's ACL tear.
George Iloka hasn't allowed a completion, defensed six passes and generated two interceptions. Leon Hall has allowed 12 receptions for 87 yards receiving, while also generating an interception, a pass defensed and an opposing quarterback rating of 51.9 -- all of which is comparable to guys like Richard Sherman and Patrick Peterson.
And it's not just pass coverage. The pass rush has been effective. In three games this season, the Bengals have generated 42 hurries, 15 hits and seven quarterback sacks (only four off the NFL lead). Wallace Gilberry leads the team with 10 hurries and two passes batted down at the line of scrimmage. Robert Geathers and Carlos Dunlap have the most quarterback hits (three each) and Dunlap leads Cincinnati with three quarterback sacks.
If Marshall asked you, what would be your response?