The Cincinnati Bengals made it through their second preseason game on the road. It didn’t feature quarterback Joe Burrow again. However, there were some really good things to take away from this game even if it wasn’t a win.
The defense continued to shine with plenty of pressure being put on Ryan Fitzpatrick. There was also a relatively clean bill of health/. Unfortunately, the offense without Burrow left plenty to be desired.
Struggles on offense
It is still just the preseason and the Bengals are still without Burrow. However, you’d still like to see the first unit offense perform a little more consistently when called on. The first one showing issues was first round pick Ja’Marr Chase.
Quinton Spain with a holding penalty and Riley Reiff with a false start.... Two bad penalties for the OL.— James Rapien (@JamesRapien) August 21, 2021
And then a drop by Ja'Marr Chase... Yeesh. Rough first series for the #Bengals offense
Ja'marr Chase with a third drop. Some day.— Goodberry (@JoeGoodberry) August 21, 2021
Good: Bengals WR Ja'Marr Chase has been targeted three times on third downs tonight.— Ben Baby (@Ben_Baby) August 21, 2021
Not good: He hasn't caught any of those targets yet.
It should be noted that Chase played his second live game since winning the National Championship with Burrow at LSU in 2019. It is a bit reasonable to expect some rust there. It isn’t ideal, but this is what the preseason is for.
There was also another target for the struggles on offense.
is he hot or did he just shred a terrible texans defense pic.twitter.com/becjVjz5oq— John Sheeran (@John__Sheeran) August 21, 2021
Allen finally got things going in the second half. You still expect more from a guy that this team thinks of as the clear backup to Burrow.
The Bengals defense has been a huge point of emphasis the past two offseasons, and it appears we are finally seeing that show up on the field.
And that's a clear fumble. Will go down as a FF by Logan Wilson and a FR by Mike Hilton. Great play be Wilson to punch it out.— Andre Perrotta (@andreperrotta13) August 21, 2021
It is just the preseason, but so far the 1's have looked good on D. If that continues into the regular season a lot of us will have a joyful feast of crow regarding Lou Anarumo.— Patrick Judis (@PatrickJudis) August 21, 2021
The first unit forced a punt, made a stop on fourth-and-inches and forced a fumble. The defensive line provided plenty of pressure and looked like a complete opposite from the past two seasons where pressure was rare to see. Fans have to hope this trend continues into the regular season.
Took the Bengals taking starters out for Washington to move the ball with their first team .— Malik Wright (@Wrightreportt) August 21, 2021
Defensive longshots continue to impress
You always love to see guys make it hard for the Bengals to cut them. That kind of effort can be contagious through a team. Defensively, we have seen two guys clearly standout. The first is pass rusher Darius Hodge, who was highlighted last week as well.
Darius Hodge with a pressure and QB hit on that third down. Last week's performance at TB has earned him an earlier look tonight.— Jay Morrison (@JayMorrisonATH) August 21, 2021
The Bengals added Trey Hendrickson, Joseph Ossai, and Cam Sample to their struggling pass rush, and now Darius Hodge is looking like he can contribute.— Blake Jewell (@BlakeJewellNFL) August 21, 2021
Hodge got plenty of run with Joseph Ossai out with injury. Him showing up with the first team pass rushing unit says so much about his coaching staff feels about him. Him coming up with more pressures is huge for that going forward.
The second is defensive back Jalen Davis who had two passes deflected in Week 1 that resulted in interceptions.
There's tonight's Jalen Davis sighting. Great play. I have a hard time seeing how you have 53 guys without him being one of them at this point.— Paul Dehner Jr. (@pauldehnerjr) August 21, 2021
He was tight in coverage again. His biggest highlight was blowing up a wide receiver screen. He also managed to hit a running back in the backfield after bursting through the trenches. Defensive back is a very deep unit, but Davis won’t make that decision easy.
Jalen Davis... Darius Hodge... Sheesh. Two guys that are playing their way onto the roster— James Rapien (@JamesRapien) August 21, 2021
Highlight of the night
This is a really easy one. Auden Tate is a human highlight reel on a normal day. When he gets to face backups, it just isn’t fair.