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Defensive stars among Bengals' Week 11 MVP candidates

The Cincinnati Bengals lost a heartbreaker at home in Week 11, but the defense was the unit that largely kept them in the contest. A couple of the defensive stars headline this week's MVP list. Cast your vote and sound off on your winner!

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

In a must-win game, the Bengals came up just short against the Bills at home in Week 11. Much like the previous two contests against the Redskins and Giants, Buffalo gave Cincinnati many chances to win the game, even while suffering a myriad of injuries to star players.

The Bengals' defense, who did allow 183 rushing yards on the day, also held the Bills to just 16 points and 159 net passing yards on the Bengals' home turf, giving the team a solid chance to win. Because of that, two of our three nominees for this week's MVP award are defensive players.

Cast your vote and sound off on your winner!

Tyler Boyd: The rookie receiver stepped up in a big way after A.J. Green went down with a hamstring injury. Five of Boyd's six catches on the day went for either a first down or a touchdown, and he racked up 54 yards while moving the sticks. Though he wasn't pushing the ball downfield, he made many tough catches in traffic to move the chains.

Dre Kirkpatrick: It's been a solid past two weeks for Kirkpatrick, who made his second athletic interception in as many games. The Bills were driving to score and Kirkpatrick played the role of a wide receiver, making a top-tapping pick off of Tyrod Taylor at the Bengals 1-yard line. He finished with the interception, his third of the year, and two tackles, while being part of a crew who clamped down on Buffalo's passing offense. Kirkpatrick was injured during the game, but it sounds like he should be good to go by next week, if not this week.

Vontaze Burfict: For the second straight week, Burfict roamed the field with tenacity and finished with a whopping 13 total tackles--11 of which were solo tackles. He also was active against the pass and sacked Taylor once on the afternoon.