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NFL Week 1: Bengals’ snap count distribution vs Ravens reveals intriguing takeaways

The offenses shifts away from Jeremy Hill, while Chris Smith gets a bigger workload than expected.

NFL: Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The Cincinnati Bengals started out the 2017 season on a sour note with an abysmal 20-0 loss at home to the Baltimore Ravens. Not much went right for the Bengals’ offense, as the running back committee failed to combine for 100 yards, Andy Dalton was sacked five times while throwing four interceptions, and the unit as a whole looked lost, failing to put any points on the board.

The defense looked a bit better, recording an interception and a sack on Flacco, as well as not allowing any individual Ravens running back to run for more than 80 yards. In fact, they looked generally in control throughout much of the game, save for a rough second quarter in which they gave up two touchdowns.

That said, it was certainly not the way the Bengals wanted to start their 2017 season. The team missing key players like John Ross, Shawn Williams, Vontaze Burfict, and Adam Jones certainly didn’t help, although it did give us a better look at how some of the lesser known players fare in a regular season game.

Snap count takeaways:

  • Although he is listed as the starting running back, Jeremy Hill received the least snaps of the Bengals’ three-man rotation at the position (10). Joe Mixon (22) and Giovani Bernard (29) both saw significantly more action, although Hill (4.3 yards per carry) significantly out-performed Mixon on the ground (1.1 yards per carry).
  • Cody Core and Alex Erickson both received a fair number of offensive snaps, but neither was targeted in the passing game. Erickson did contribute as the Bengals’ only kick/punt returner, but Core was unable to find any way to contribute statistically.
  • T.J. Johnson found a significant amount of playing time following Trey Hopkins’ second-quarter knee injury. Hopkins looked to be on pace to hold down the starting right guard job before his injury. Alex Redmond is listed as Hopkins’ backup on the Bengals’ official depth chart, although he was inactive on Sunday. He could potentially see more time on the active roster if Hopkins’ injury is serious.
  • The Bengals’ offensive line looked awful on Sunday, allowing five sacks and supporting an ineffective running game. However, Clint Boling, Jake Fisher, Cedric Ogbuehi, and Russell Bodine still played 100 percent of the team’s snaps. Only the right guard position saw lineup changes, largely due to Hopkins’ injury.
  • Darqueze Dennard had an intriguing day. He was effective in pass coverage, recording four tackles and a pass deflection. But, perhaps the most notable stat was the 98 percent of defensive snaps he played against the Ravens.
  • Defensive end Chris Smith continues to impress at defensive end. He only recorded a single tackle on the day (for a loss), but he played more snaps (28) than any other defensive end on the team other than Carlos Dunlap (55). Both Jordan Willis (26) and Michael Johnson (24) saw less playing time than the former Jaguars practice squad member, though Johnson suffered a stinger and possible concussion that kept him out for the second half.
  • Although they are listed as playing zero snaps on the chart, Derron Smith and Cethan Carter both contributed on special teams. Clark Harris, Kevin Huber, and Randy Bullock also saw snaps, although they are exclusively special teams players.

Bengals Week 1 Snap Counts

# NAME POS. Snaps % Time Played
# NAME POS. Snaps % Time Played
60 Johnson, T.J. C 32 52%
61 Bodine, Russell C 61 100%
24 Jones, Adam CB 0 0%
20 Russell, KeiVarae CB 0 0%
26 Shaw, Josh CB 22 33%
21 Dennard, Darqueze CB 65 98%
22 Jackson, William CB 29 44%
27 Kirkpatrick, Dre CB 65 98%
90 Johnson, Michael DE 24 36%
96 Dunlap, Carlos DE 55 83%
94 Smith, Chris DE 28 42%
99 Willis, Jordan DE 26 39%
97 Atkins, Geno DT 41 62%
75 Billings, Andrew DT 13 20%
92 Sims, Pat DT 30 45%
67 Glasgow, Ryan DT 26 39%
65 Boling, Clint G 61 100%
66 Hopkins, Trey G 29 48%
63 Westerman, Christian G DNP DNP
71 Smith, Andre G 0 0%
62 Redmond, Alex G DNP DNP
89 Hewitt, Ryan H-B 7 11%
82 Carter, Cethan H-B 0 0%
32 Hill, Jeremy HB 10 16%
28 Mixon, Joe HB 22 36%
25 Bernard, Giovani HB 29 48
30 Peerman, Cedric HB 0 0
55 Burfict, Vontaze LB 0 0%
51 Minter, Kevin LB 38 58%
57 Rey, Vincent LB 51 77%
59 Vigil, Nick LB 65 98%
58 Lawson, Carl LB 23 35%
56 Nickerson, Hardy LB 1 2%
50 Evans, Jordan LB 12 18%
74 Fisher, Jake OT 61 100%
70 Ogbuehi, Cedric OT 61 100%
14 Dalton, Andy QB 61 100%
5 McCarron, AJ QB 0 0%
36 Williams, Shawn S DNP DNP
31 Smith, Derron S 0 0%
42 Fejedelem, Clayton S 52 79%
43 Iloka, George S 58 88%
85 Eifert, Tyler TE 54 89%
81 Kroft, Tyler TE 12 20%
87 Uzomah, C.J. TE DNP DNP
16 Core, Cody WR 10 16%
18 Green, A.J. WR 55 90%
11 LaFell, Brandon WR 57 93%
83 Boyd, Tyler WR 42 69%
80 Malone, Josh WR DNP DNP
12 Erickson, Alex WR 7 11%
15 Ross, John WR DNP DNP