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Atkins among top 5 in Week 14 B/R NFL 1000

A comfortable game against the Browns paved the way for many good performances by Bengals players, but no one surpassed Geno Atkins’ ranking among the best NFL players this week.

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Statistically speaking, Geno Atkins hasn’t had a dominant year on par with last season or his 2013 campaign. Outsiders could have been concerned, after all, he also had a poor 2014 season after he spent that offseason recovering from an ACL tear suffered the season prior. Bengals fans, though, knew better. Atkins was getting pressure, helping the rest of the line and only waiting for a big game. That happened on Sunday against the Browns’ porous interior offensive line.

The Bengals defensive tackle had a huge line: two sacks, one quarterback hit, four hurries, and three more tackles. On a comfortable day for Cincinnati’s defense, Atkins shined, and the latest B/R NFL 1000 rankings reflected that. Atkins received the best grade at the position by a big margin, and the fourth-best grade in the entire league, only behind Aaron Rodgers, Le’Veon Bell and Janoris Jenkins. All three players ranked ahead of him had monster performances in meaningful games. Atkins did win AFC Defensive Player of the Week, for his efforts.

It is the second time this season that Atkins has been ranked number one among defensive tackles this season, but his 83 grade is a bit low compared to the 91 he posted in Week 1 against the Jets.

Many other Bengals were in their respective top 10s, including running back Jeremy Hill, who was again a force of nature against the Browns and their poor rushing defense. Hill was the second-best running back in Week 14, only after Bell. His grade of 77 is his best yet, and that second spot is his season high as well. The much-discussed Bengals running back was the only other Cincinnati player to finish in the top 50 players in the league, coming in at 28th.

Andy Dalton played well with a second consecutive top 10 finish among quarterbacks (8th). He didn’t come close at repeating the great game he had against the Eagles, but he didn’t have to. Tyler Eifert, who scored twice on Sunday, was the second-highest ranked tight end, only behind Travis Kielce. Eifert had surprisingly the second-best grade in the blocking category with 20 points, only one less than Anthony Fasano of the Titans, a blocking specialist. Jake Fisher managed a top 10 finish at right tackle with the ninth spot. Can the second year tackle have an impressive performance this week against a tougher front seven? That’s the question on our minds.

On the other side of the ball both Vontaze Burfict and Karlos Dansby were among the 10 best 4-3 outside linebackers. The former had a third-best grade with 71 points and Dansby was ranked slightly worse because of his inferior rushing grade, but still ended up as the fifth-best outside linebacker for the week. George Iloka, who got one pick on Sunday, was the fourth-highest ranked free safety.

Kevin Huber registered his best grade and finish of the season, after also achieving that feat last week. Prior to the Eagles game, he was being consistently ranked in the bottom 10 all year.

The negatives were again the now cut kicker Mike Nugent, inside linebacker Rey Maualuga, every defensive end - including Carlos Dunlap - and center Russell Bodine. The offensive lineman had been playing much better of late, but as one Bengals fan on Twitter said, when Cincinnati solved their problem on the right side, the one in the middle re-emerged.

Here are the ranked Bengals players this week and you can check the full rankings here:

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Player Pos Rank/out of Week 13 Score (all out of 100) Week 13 High rank/score Low rank/score
Player Pos Rank/out of Week 13 Score (all out of 100) Week 13 High rank/score Low rank/score
Andy Dalton QB 8/33 2 ↓ 72 82 ↓ 2 (Week 13) /82 (Week 13) 31 (Week 12) /53 (Week 8)
Giovani Bernard RB N/R N/R N/R N/R 12 (Week 8) /73 (Weeks 5, 6, 8 and 11) 51 (Week 1) /69 (Week 1)
Jeremy Hill RB 2/64 23 ↑ 77 72 ↑ 2 (Week 14) /77 (Week 14) 53 (Week 2) /66 (Week 5)
Rex Burkhead RB N/R 33 N/R 70 33 (Week 13) /70 (Week 13) 46 (Week 12) /67 (Week 12)
A.J. Green WR N/R N/R N/R N/R 1 (Week 1) /86 (Week 1) 32 (Week 2) /70 (Week 5)
Brandon LaFell WR 51/119 11 ↓ 65 71 ↓ 6 (Week 5) /76 (Weeks 1&5) 73 (Week 12) /64 (Weeks 10&11)
Tyler Boyd WR 16/119 30 ↑ 69 68 ↑ 16 (Week 14) /69 (Week 14) 104 (Week 1) /60 (Week 1)
Alex Erickson WR 77/119 90 ↑ 62 61 ↑ 77 (Week 14) /62 (Week 14) 129 (Week 6) / 55 (Week 7)
Cody Core WR 86/119 64 ↓ 61 65 ↓ 64 (Week 13) /65 (Week 13) 115 (Week 1) /52 (Week 1)
James Wright WR N/R 78 N/R 63 71 (Week 11) /65 (Week 12) 125 (Week 4) /54 (Week 4)
Tyler Eifert TE 2/74 13 ↑ 72 68 ↑ 1 (Week 8) /79 (Week 8) 16 (Weeks 10&11) /65 (Week 7)
Ryan Hewitt TE 42/74 48 ↑ 61 61 ↔ 30 (Week 8) /63 (Week 3) 67 (Weeks 2&7) /55 (Week 2)
Tyler Kroft TE 50/74 49 ↓ 60 60 ↔ 14 (Week 6) 66 (Week 6) 62 (Week 1) /51 (Week 1)
C.J. Uzomah TE N/R N/R N/R N/R 6 (Week 4) /71 (Week 4) 67 (Weeks 2&7) /55 (Week 2)
Andrew Whitworth LT 14/34 8 ↓ 75 75 ↔ 6 (Weeks 1&4) /85 (Week 1) 17 (Week 12) /73 (Week 5)
Jake Fisher RT 9/34 N/R 74 N/R 9 (Week 14) /74 (Week 14) 26 (Week 7) /70 (Week 7)
Eric Winston RT 12/34 23 ↑ 73 69 ↑ 7 (Week 8) /74 (Week 8) 27 (Week 12) /68 (Week 12)
Cedric Ogbuehi OT N/R N/R * N/R N/R * 20 (Week 6) /72 (Week 2) 34 (Week 12) /63 (Week 10)
Clint Boling G 21/67 45 ↑ 71 66 ↑ 10 (Weeks 2&7) /79 (Weeks 1&2) 52 (Week 12) /66 (Weeks 12&13)
Kevin Zeitler G 32/67 25 ↓ 70 70 ↔ 1 (Week 7) /80 (Week 3) 50 (Week 1) /67 (Week 8)
Russell Bodine C 33/33 18 ↓ 61 69 ↓ 10 (Week 12) /70 (Weeks 11&12) 33 (Week 14) /57 (Week 1)
T.J. Johnson C N/R N/R N/R N/R 30 (Week 6) /65 (Week 6) 30 (Week 6) /65 (Week 6)
Carlos Dunlap DE 47/54 2 ↓ 63 76 ↓ 1 (Week 4) /76 (Weeks 4&13) 47 (Week 14) /62 (Week 2)
Michael Johnson DE 51/54 56 ↑ 61 62 ↓ 19 (Week 2) /67 (Week 12) 56 (Week 13) /55 (Weeks 1&3)
Will Clarke DE 53/54 41 ↓ 60 66 ↓ 33 (Week 4) /66 (Week 13) 55 (Weeks 5&12) /53 (Week 5)
Margus Hunt DE N/R 40 N/R 66 20 (Week 2) /66 (Week 13) 60 (Week 4) 53 (Week 4)
Wallace Gilberry DE N/R N/R N/R N/R 23 (Week 11) /67 (Week 11) 58 (Week 12) /59 (Week 12)
Geno Atkins DT 1/86 4 ↑ 83 73 ↑ 1 (Weeks 10&14) /91 (Week 1) 16 (Week 5) /70 (Week 12)
DeShawn Williams DT 53/86 49 ↓ 61 62 ↓ 49 (Week 13) /62 (Week 13) 53 (Week 14) /61 (Week 14)
Domata Peko DT 65/86 57 ↓ 59 60 ↓ 29 (Week 4) /70 (Week 1) 70 (Week 12) /58 (Week 12)
Pat Sims DT 75/86 63 ↓ 57 59 ↓ 45 (Week 4) /64 (Week 4) 82 (Week 12) /53 (Week 12)
Vontaze Burfict OLB 3/41 4 ↑ 71 72 ↓ 1 (Week 10) /79 (Week 10) 38 (Week 11) /58 (Week 12)
Karlos Dansby OLB 5/41 12 ↑ 69 65 ↑ 5 (Week 14) /73 (Week 2) 35 (Week 10) /53 (Week 1)
Vincent Rey OLB 28/41 7 ↓ 62 69 ↓ 7 (Week 2) /76 (Week 2) 31 (Week 10) /57 (Week 6)
Nick Vigil OLB N/R N/R N/R N/R 33 (Week 11) /58 (Week 11) 33 (Week 11) /58 (Week 11)
Rey Maualuga ILB 48/56 34 ↓ 64 65 ↓ 24 (Week 12) /71 (Week 3) 52 (Week 1) /60 (Week 5)
Adam Jones CB 17/101 32 ↑ 71 68 ↑ 7 (Week 11) /81 (Week 2) 74 (Week 3) /57 (Week 10)
Dre Kirkpatrick CB 38/101 28 ↓ 65 70 ↓ 7 (Week 12) /80 (Week 2) 104 (Week 1) /49 (Week 1)
Josh Shaw CB 33/101 24 ↓ 66 71 ↓ 15 (Week 12) /72 (Weeks 1&12) 80 (Weeks 3&8) /53 (Week 8)
Darqueze Dennard CB N/R 35 N/R 65 35 (Week 13) /65 (Week 13) 105 (Week 12) /45 (Week 12)
George Iloka FS 4/45 8 ↑ 75 76 ↓ 5 (Week 8) /77 (Weeks 3&8) 40 (Week 6) /62 (Week 6)
Derron Smith FS N/R N/R N/R N/R 11 (Week 11) /75 (Week 11) 27 (Week 6) /72 (Week 6)
Shawn Williams SS 11/41 13 ↑ 73 72 ↑ 1 (Week 8) /82 (Weeks 1&3) 30 (Week 11) /69 (Week 11)
Clayton Fejedelem SS N/R 38 N/R 65 23 (Week 12) /70 (Week 12) 38 (Week 13) /65 (Week 13)
Mike Nugent K 27/32 21 ↓ 58 65 ↓ 4 (Week 4) /74 (Week 4) 29 (Weeks 7&12) /45 (Week 11)
Kevin Huber P 7/32 11 ↑ 70 65 ↑ 11 (Week 13) /69 (Week 4) 32 (Week 2) /53 (Week 5)

* Cedric Ogbuehi got graded last week but he didn’t play.