2_Cincinnati Bengals1

Oakland Raiders Gameday HQ

AFC-NORTH BENGALS 2014 STRENGTHS: • Strong offensive line, blossoming young quarterback, excellent special teams Bengals Offense The Cincinnati Bengals’ offense has the potential to be explosive at times. But it will be tested without wide receiver Marvin Jones, who will miss at least three weeks with a foot injury. Jones, who had a pin surgically placed in his left foot, was the Bengals’ second-leading wide receiver last season behind only A.J. Green. Including the Bengals’ playoff loss to the San Diego Chargers, Jones compiled 59 receptions for 842 yards and 10 touchdowns. Quarterback Andy Dalton does have plenty of other weapons and Mohamed Sanu will be expected to step up if Jones is out longer than expected. For the Bengals to take that next step in the playoffs, they’ll need improved production from their trio of running backs— Giovani Bernard, BenJarvus Green-Ellis and Jeremy Hill. If the Bengals can get consistency at this position, it will open up the passing game. The offense has gotten better in each of Dalton’s first three 2014 WEAKNESSES: • Consistency on defensive line, speed at running back, lack of depth at linebacker CINCINNATI seasons. Three years ago, the Bengals overall offense was ranked No. 20. By the end of last season, it was all the way up to No. 10. That was largely due to an eighth-ranked passing attack that took advantage of Dalton’s ability to pass the ball downfield, averaging 258.5 yards per game. Offensive coordinator Jay Gruden is now coaching the Washington Redskins and Hue Jackson has been hired in Gruden’s place. In the last three seasons, the Bengals ranked Nos. 19, 18 and 18, respectively, in rushing offense. Jackson’s task will be to improve the run game and keep opposing defenses off balance. The offensive line has been steadily improving through ANDY LYONS/GETTY IMAGES SPORT the years and looks to be a major strength in 2014. By protecting Dalton and opening up holes for the running game, the Bengals will have the ability to score a plethora of points once again. The key for the Bengals is keeping as balance as possible and not relying solely on Dalton’s arm. Offensive Player to Watch Dalton agreed to a contract extension worth as much as $115 million over six years. If the Bengals win the Super Bowl with Dalton at quarterback, he will receive $1.5 million more for every year after that remaining. There are a ton of other contract clauses, but the overall point is simple: The Bengals are counting on Dalton to lead them in every way. Dalton has won 30 games in his first three seasons but he has an 0-3 record in the playoffs with one touchdown and six interceptions. Dalton has yet to miss a start in his Bengals’ career and his 30-18 regular season mark is the best winning percentage (.625) of any Bengals Andy Dalton


Oakland Raiders Gameday HQ
To see the actual publication please follow the link above