Bengals vs. Chargers: Instant Grades, Analysis for San Diego

Ryan Heidrich@@Ryan_HeidrichCorrespondent IIDecember 2, 2012

Bengals vs. Chargers: Instant Grades, Analysis for San Diego

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    Current Score: 20-13 Bengals Final

    The 4-7 San Diego Chargers will look to rebound against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday after falling to the Baltimore Ravens in dramatic fashion in Week 12.

    The Bengals arrive in San Diego looking to keep their playoff aspirations alive as they try to keep their recent momentum going forward. 

    For the Chargers, it is time to play spoiler. Their playoff hopes are nearly gone, and, given their remaining schedule, it would be nearly impossible for the Chargers to earn a wild-card bid (they would most likely have to win out). 

    Follow along for instant analysis and quarter-by-quarter grades as the Chargers look to inch closer to the .500 mark. 


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    Fourth Quarter Grade: C- 

    While Philip Rivers was able to move the ball down the field in crunch time, in the end he could not get the job done. Rivers continue to struggle with the game on the line and seems rushed at all times. This is a direct reflection on inability to stand in a pocket and make a throw down field. 

    Third Quarter Grade: B-

    Rivers has been forced out of the pocket many times today and has actually looked mobile. While it would be a bad idea for the Rivers to attempt to get out of the pocket more, he has done a good job at dealing what he is given. 

    Second Quarter Grade: A- 

    Rivers has been extremely impressive this game. He has done a great job at avoiding the rush and has been able to step up and get the ball out quickly. Rivers even scrambled for 10 yards, which is something that Charger fans are not used to seeing. Rivers needs to find a way to get the ball into the end zone in the second. 

    First Quarter Grade: B 

    Rivers looked great in the first quarter. He has adapted to having little to no time and is getting the ball out of his hand much quicker. The Bengals are going to get after Rivers all afternoon so he will have to remain calm under pressure much like he did in the first quarter. 


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    Fourth Quarter Grade: D 

    The offense failed to get the ball into the end zone once again and it cost the Chargers the game. The offensive line is in shambles, which means that the running game is nonexistent and the Philip Rivers cannot make throws down field. The result is an offense that consistently sputters.

    Third Quarter Grade: B- 

    The offense struggled in the third quarter as their touchdown drought continues on. The running game has been nonexistent and the Chargers are actually being led by Philip Rivers in that category. The offensive line is struggling to open holes or give enough for Rivers to move the ball into the end zone. 

    Second Quarter Grade: A- 

    The Chargers offense was impressive in the second quarter. Danario Alexander has been a beast as he continues to be a menace for opposing defenses. The Chargers don't have a score yet but are looking capable as they are moving up and down the field. 

    First Quarter Grade: B

    The Chargers offense answered the huge drive by the Bengals with a nice drive of their own. They where unable to get the ball into the end zone but will take the three points. They showed that they are able to move the ball on the Bengal defense. 


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    Fourth Quarter Grade: A 

    The defense was the lone bright spot for the Chargers. In the fourth quarter they continued to lock down the Bengals offense giving the offense a chance to win the game. Even with all the injuries on the defensive side of the ball for the Chargers.

    Third Quarter Grade: A 

    The turnover machine continues on as the Chargers defense has been extremely impressive since the first quarter. The defense has done a great job at locking down on AJ Green, who has set the NFL on fire this year. 

    Second Quarter Grade: A+ 

    If the Chargers offense cannot score the defense might as well pick the slack up. The Chargers defense looked much better in the second quarter than the first quarter. The defense has been doing a great job at getting pressure on Andy Dalton. 

    First Quarter Grade: D 

    Yikes. Not the Start the Chargers wanted against the Bengals. Sixteen plays, 91 yards and a touchdown for the Bengals on their first possession of the game. The Chargers have to find a way to get off the field or they will be in for a very long afternoon. 

Special Teams

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    Fourth Quarter Grade: C 

    The Chargers' special team unit failed to make an impact on in the fourth quarter. 

    Third Quarter Grade: C- 

    Adam Jones is killing the Chargers on punt returns. Nick Novak missed a 54 yard field goal which would of pushed the Chargers lead to six points. 

    Second Quarter Grade: A 

    Two very short field goals have given the Chargers the lead.

    First Quarter Grade: B

    Solid kickoff coverage to start the game pinned the Bengals deep in their own territory. It would be nice to see the Chargers get going in the return game. Field position would really help out the struggling offense. 


5 of 5

    Fourth Quarter Grade: D 

    Another close game and another loss for the Chargers. The Chargers coaching staff failed to get anything going on offense, which is the reason that they came up short. The defense played amazing but the offense did not pull their own weight. 

    Third Quarter Grade: C+ 

    While the Chargers have been able to move the ball they need to put the ball into the end zone. Norv Turner needs to find a way to get the Chargers in the end zone in this tight three point game. 

    Second Quarter Grade: B 

    Turner has a done a great job of play calling in the second quarter. He was able to dial up plays that allow Philip Rivers to get the ball out quickly. 

    First Quarter Grade: C+ 

    The defense looked completely awful in the first quarter as they are riddled with injuries. Norv Turner had the offense in a great rhythm as they marched down the field deep into Bengal territory.