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Germaine Pratt plays most of snaps in loss to Browns

Germaine Pratt is finally getting his wish to play almost every snap.

Syndication: The Enquirer Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Cincinnati Bengals lost an ugly one to the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. However, we do get to look at the team's first opportunity to show how they want to hand out divvy-up snaps when the games matter again.

While seeing things like the starting offensive line took all the snaps isn’t surprising, the Bengals did do a few interesting things Sunday that are worth watching going forward.

Here are the snap count takeaways from the loss to Cleveland

  • The thing everyone noticed instantly was how the Bengals were willing and ready to rotate running backs. Joe Mixon led the way with 35, Trayveon Williams had 16, and Chris Evans even kicked in seven, which didn’t just come when the game was out of reach. Evans had three touches, and Williams had two, but we will have to see how the split behind Mixon continues to go. Also worth noting rookie running back Chase Brown was a healthy scratch for the day.
  • Speaking of healthy scratches on offense, offensive lineman Jackson Carman was not suited up in favor of D’Ante Smith. It may have been based on how they viewed the matchup with all the pass rushers, but the team had been experimenting with Carman as more of a sixth lineman to help on running plays. Smith didn’t get on the field to fill that role. Whether this is where the team is with Carman as the offensive lineman on the bubble or just not active in favor of a better pass protector won’t be apparent until we see some more games.
  • One of the last things for the offense is how the tight ends/fourth wide receiver splits worked out. Hayden Hurst was pretty much the unquestioned guy last year, with Drew Sample out with an injury during 2022. Hurst is gone, Irv Smith Jr. came via free agency, and Sample is back and healthy. Smith (30) and Sample (18) split most of that role behind the big three at wide receiver. Wide receiver Trenton Irwin saw 12 snaps, tight end Mitch Wilcox (7), and even rookie wide receiver Andrei Iosivas (1) filled out the snaps there. Hopefully, next week we can see what these guys can do without the attention being on them.
  • Safety Daxton Hill has the same trust from the coaching staff that Jessie Bates did. He played all but one snap (probably goal-line defense), and he showed up with quite a few important plays, including an interception.
  • The cornerback position was a bit of a revolving door, It could be Chidobe Awuzie (43) isn’t all the way healthy, but we also saw plenty of rookie cornerback DJ Turner (35). He had ups and downs in the bad weather, but we will have to see how long this continues. Cam Taylor-Britt played all but one snap as well, so his role as a starter is firmly in place as many expected once Eli Apple wasn’t brought back.
  • Defensive tackle Zach Carter (31) and defensive lineman Cam Sample (29) were the first defensive linemen off the bench with Joseph Ossai out with an injury. Both of these young players are starting to look better in their roles as depth pass rushers. Sample tipped the pass that Hill ultimately intercepted. Also worth mentioning Myles Murphy played 18 snaps.
  • Germaine Pratt returned this offseason, and now he and Logan Wilson will be this team’s duo for at least the next three seasons. Pratt complained last season about being taken off on third downs, and it is fair to say defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo listened. Pratt only missed eight snaps, and honestly, he should continue to see those kinds of snaps going forward. He looked impressive, as usual.
Offensive snap counts