With all the talk about Jake Browning and the offense, the defense is not getting enough credit for how they stepped up in the Cincinnati Bengals’ overtime win over the Minnesota Vikings. They created turnovers and stepped up in some big moments.
The biggest, of course, was 4th and inches. Let’s take a look at that quarterback sneak and the one before it and see how they got the stop.
First, let’s take a look at two quarterback sneaks that they did convert on the first drive of the game.
In this clip, both guards step in. Along with the center, they make a 3-man wedge to push the defensive tackles who occupy both A-gaps. The offense wants to get really low and drive the defense forward. B.J. Hill (92) is able to stand up the guard and stop his forward movement, but help from the right tackle pushes Nick Mullens forward for the first down.
This time Mullins basically lays on the center’s back. Hill is not able to stand up the guard, but he does slide underneath his block to get a hit on the quarterback. Still, this isn’t enough to stop the rusher’s forward momentum and the Bengals give up another first down.
At the end of the game, it was different.
Here on 3rd and Short, Hill and Zach Carter (95) work together to stand up the center, stopping the quarterback from just lowering his shoulder and barreling forward.
The play was really made by Myles Murphy (99) as he darts in and pushes the guard over, causing a domino effect that takes the pile down short of the first down.
This was a huge play in overtime that set up 4th and inches. Let’s take a look.
On 4th down, Hill and Carter do an excellent job once again. This time Carter actually penetrates the A-gap, causing a big problem for the Vikings. It gets even worse when Sam Hubbard (94) and Trey Hendrickson (91) pinch down hard, and Akeem Davis-Gaither (59) and Mike Hilton (21) come screaming off their respective edges.
It is extremely difficult to stop the quarterback sneak, but the Bengals did it twice in a row when it really mattered. This defense knows how to step up in big moments.