The Cincinnati Bengals demolished the Browns in a 37-3 win on Sunday. The top-graded players from our friends at Pro Football Focus were Geno Atkins (+9.2), Andrew Whitworth (+3.5), Andy Dalton (+3.2) and Kevin Zeitler (+2.7). Check out our analysis and more of PFF's grades for the Bengals in Week 13.
When the Bengals had the ball in the second half, it was more of a waiting game than anything else. By the middle of the third quarter, the Browns had proven themselves almost completely inept on both sides of the ball, and Cincinnati was in cruise-control mode. In a comfortable game-manager role with an even more comfortable lead for the majority of the game, Andy Dalton excelled. He had a 77.8% accuracy mark on his targeted passes, going 4-for-4 on passes of over 20 yards. Those throws resulted in 121 yards and two touchdowns.
In the ground game, Jeremy Hill turned in one of the best performances outside of the red zone we've seen all year (+1.1). He was good for almost five yards per carry with 98 yards on 22 attempts. The fact that he averaged 3.6 yards after contact isn't too shabby, either - it helped him earn his highest grade since Week 8, a +2.9. Rookie Jake Fisher has consistently improved this year, and there wasn't much negative to say about him in the first place. His +1.6 grade against the Browns was his highest of the season, highlighted by the fact that he didn't allow a single quarterback pressure. Tyler Kroft and Ryan Hewitt were on opposite sports of the spectrum; the former graded positively in both the run (+1.0) and pass game (+.03), while the latter was on the negative side in both (-1.9 and -1.8 respectively).
Andrew Whitworth's fantastic performance puts him at +25.2 on the season, third highest among NFL tackles to this point. In fact, it's likely had something to do with Andre Smith not looking quite as bad as he's actually been this year. The big right tackle posted his eighth negative grade (-1.1) in his 10 games played this season.
Defensively, Geno Atkins has been making opposing quarterbacks part of his "Atkins diet" all year long. This week, he posted the second best overall grade (+9.2) of all DTs in the league. In other words, he once again led all Bengals defenders with a performance highlighted by 11 quarterback hurries and two quarterback hits. He didn't miss a single tackle.
The secondary has been solid most of the season, despite injuries. However, Adam Jones (-1.1) did post his first largely negative grade against the Browns. It's important to note that grade is a bit skewed because of a (-.9) penalty grade. Shawn Williams (+0.3) and Domata Peko (+1.6) also put in positive performances.
Overall, the defense had a shutdown type of day, allowing just 3 points. While there were some individual blotches, the collective unit didn't give much to bicker about.
With Kevin Huber not being forced to punt too often at all, our attention turns to kicker Mike Nugent. Despite going three for three on field goals, he only had three touchbacks on eight kicks, resulting in a -1.4 overall game. This is being fairly picky in the kicker's game - the nine field goal points came on kicks of 20, 40, and 44 yards. A day with no missed field goals and four successful extra points is a good day.
As the storyline last week went, the win against Cleveland was nothing short of dominant. However, while the offense stole a lot of the spotlight in the grades, the spotlight should be pointed toward Carlos Dunlap. The Bengals have one of the best defensive tackles in the league in Atkins, but his production is made possible by Dunlap's significant +11.2 pass rush productivity grade. He has 56 total quarterback pressure on 400 snaps this season, and he's the 5th ranked 4-3 DE in the league.