clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Stock up, stock down after Bengals’ debacle vs Bills

Tyler Boyd stepped up with the Bengals offense needing a spark.

NFL: Buffalo Bills at Cincinnati Bengals David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

The Bengals’ worst game of the season is thankfully over.

It feels like anyone who watched or was part of this debacle was a loser, but Cincinnati is the team who is now 3-6-1 after a 16-12 defeat by the Buffalo Bills. It was a familiar theme as the Bengals lost a game they had no business losing, but made far too many mistakes to pull off the win, the story of their 2016 season.

Here is a look at the winners and losers from this game, essentially a stock report following a game where everyone in Cincinnati was essentially a loser.


Tyler Boyd

Through 10 weeks, it seemed like Tyler Boyd’s rookie season would be an uneventful one. He’s usually been the third, fourth, or even fifth option in this passing game behind A.J. Green, Tyler Eifert, Brandon LaFell, and Giovani Bernard.

Even when Boyd was getting chances, he wasn’t making enough plays with them to feel good about the second-round rookie out of Pittsburgh...until Week 11 that is. With Green out for most of this game and Eifert also hobbled, Boyd stepped up and made big play after big play for the Bengals’ struggling offense.

Boyd alone was a big reason why Cincinnati was still in this game going into the fourth quarter with everyone else seeming to struggle. He was also doing well, while Andy Dalton was having a poor game, and you have to feel a lot better about Boyd’s future in stripes after this game.

Unfortunately, Boyd will be getting a much bigger role in the offense for the foreseeable future with Green potentially out for the remainder of the season.

Boyd finished with six catches for 54 yards and 1 touchdown.

Michael Johnson

This was the kind of game Michael Johnson needed to have for a defensive end unit that’s been struggling outside of Carlos Dunlap. Against the Bills, Johnson had arguably his best game of the season with five tackles, a half a sack, one tackle for loss and one QB hit.

His impact on the game was bigger than that as he helped keep Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor contained for most of this game. Taylor, one of the NFL’s best dual-threat quarterbacks, finished this game with just 166 passing yards, 39 rushing yards and no scores. It was just the second game this season in which Taylor failed to score, and Johnson keeping him contained was a big part of it.


Andy Dalton

The pressure to carry this offense, not to mention the constant pressure his offensive line is letting through, has finally gotten to Andy Dalton. He was playing at an elite level over the first two months, but he’s struggling mightily in the month of November.

Dalton had easily his worst game of the season in the team’s narrow loss to the Bills. He finished 23-of-43 passing for 207 yards and one touchdown vs two interceptions to go with a rushing score.

He now has thrown four interceptions over the last three games vs just three passing scores, his worst stretch since 2014. The Bengals were barely staying afloat when Dalton was playing great, so it’s no surprise they’ve begun to sink when he’s struggled.

A.J. Green

As mentioned above, Green’s season may be over after he reportedly suffered a torn hamstring muscle vs Buffalo. It happened on a pass play intended for Green down the left sideline that was incomplete.

After lying on the field for a few minutes, Green was carted back to the locker room to be further examined by trainers before being ruled out, and now it looks like his season may be over.

If Green is out, the Bengals are suddenly left with Brandon LaFell, Tyler Boyd, James Wright, and Tyler Eifert as their top pass-catchers. That’s less than ideal, but the more pressing concern is Green’s health. Hopefully this is nothing too serious and he’ll recovery quickly.

Vontaze Burfict

Really man? Really?

This is the guy that’s supposed to be leading the Bengals’ defense, but instead, he continues to make a fool out of himself while giving everyone more ammo for their ‘Burfict is dirty’ opinions. It’s getting hard to argue with them when Burfict carries himself like a who that doesn’t give a crap on or off the field about his image.

That can be a good thing in many instances, but in the case of Burfict, it’s one of his biggest shortcomings as an NFL player.

Bengals’ postseason hopes

It’s just about safe to say the Bengals’ playoff hopes are dead and gone. With A.J. Green and other key players injured, the offensive line being hot garbage, and this team making far too many mistakes to win close games, there is no reason to think this team is capable of even finishing with a winning record, let alone making it to the playoffs.

This is looking like a rebuilding year, even though the Bengals are just two games behind the Steelers and Ravens for the AFC North lead, two teams they’ll play three times over the final seven games.

But this Bengals team will be lucky to win one of those games with how poorly they’re playing and how much they’re struggling to play good football for four quarters.