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How Bengals divided up passing targets vs. Dolphins

Drew Sample became a big part of the Bengals’ offensive game plan in Miami.

NFL: NOV 22 Bengals at Washington Football Team Photo by Randy Litzinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Cincinnati Bengals were an absolute mess on Sunday.

Despite having the lead for a solid portion of the first half, the team fell apart to end the half and into the second half with multiple crucial special teams mistakes. Mike Thomas had a few extremely disappointing mistakes.

Those didn’t doom the Bengals; their offensive line did, giving starting quarterback Brandon Allen no help at all.

Allen was sacked five times while second-year quarterback Ryan Finley, who also got some snaps, was sacked once. The Bengals failed to get the Dolphins rookie Tua Tagovailoa on the ground at all.

This game was won, and lost, in the trenches.

As for Allen, he led the team with 153 passing yards, just over half of what Tagovailoa was able to finish with. Allen was 11/19 on the day and had both an interception and a touchdown. He ended with a 24.1 quarterback rating.

Finley was 6/7 with 40 yards and a 1.5 QBR. What’s crazy is that neither Allen and Finley had the best passer rating. Tyler Boyd, who had one pass attempt, finished with a 25.0 rating.

That said, as far as targets goes, it was much of the same. Tee Higgins, Tyler Boyd and Drew Sample led the pack. Sadly, you’ll note one big-time name was left out, as A.J. Green had just one target and was held without a single reception.

Although he had four targets, Boyd ended with just one reception that went for the Bengals sole touchdown, a 72-yard strike.

As for Sample, he continues to be a relevant option. The second-round pick from the 2019 draft had seven target and seven receptions, the most on the team. Sample and Higgins combined for 12 of the 17 completions for Cincinnati.

Overall, here’s how the target share broke down.

  • Tee Higgins 7
  • Drew Sample 7
  • Tyler Boyd 4
  • Alex Erickson 3
  • Giovani Bernard 2
  • A.J. Green 1
  • Brandon Allen 1
  • Mason Schreck 1