Full Week 3 Stat Predictions for Cincinnati Bengals Offensive Players
The bad news? The road gets significantly tougher for the Bengals as Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers come to town. Simply put, Cincinnati's defense can't contain the Green Bay offense like they contained Pittsburgh.
They'll do some of the work, but the offense is going to have to perform significantly better than they did Monday night. As a rather pedestrian defense comes to town, what can we expect from the Bengals offense this Sunday?
Tyler Eifert—4 receptions, 45 yards, TD
In his first two regular-season appearances in the NFL, tight end Tyler Eifert has appeared to be as good as billed. He had a 61-yard play on Monday night that really showed his prowess as an athlete.
His speed was uncanny on the play—a lot of his billing had to do with his strength and great hands. People forget that there's some speed to the man as well.
The rookie has already become a main guy in Jay Gruden's offense, and I expect him to get his first NFL score this Sunday.
Jermaine Gresham—4 receptions, 27 yards
Gresham was in a rookie in 2010 when Carson Palmer was throwing the ball, but he's really flourished since Andy Dalton came to town. He may have had his issues with dropped passes, but he certainly hasn't had problems this season.
Green and Eifert may be seeing a lot of attention now, but while Gresham is in town, he'll continue to make an impact.
A.J. Green—8 receptions, 102 yards, TD
With Green Bay's secondary getting ripped to shreds, A.J. Green should have high expectations for this game. I don't think it will matter if he's double-covered—Green is so quick and athletic that he'll be able to get away.
He managed to escape Pittsburgh defenders for six catches on Monday night, and they're a notch or two above Green Bay's corners. Assuming Dalton can get the ball to Green, he should have a big game in Week 3.
Mohamed Sanu—5 receptions, 91 yards, TD
Mohamed Sanu didn't have any tremendous performance on Monday night, but following a key fumble against Chicago in Week 1, he bounced back nicely. He caught five passes and is coming into his own as a starter.
He won't burn anyone down the field with his speed, but he's incredibly physical. While Green will be blowing by Sam Shields, Sanu will be fighting off Tramon Williams (or vice versa). Assuming his hands remain steady, you can bet that he will continue to see more and more action.
Marvin Jones—2 receptions, 22 yards
With Andrew Hawkins missing time, Marvin Jones is seeing more action than he might regularly see. He had a solid showing Monday night with 35 yards on three catches.
Hopes are high for Jones as he progresses over the next couple of seasons, and he can be a solid slot man.
Ryan Whalen—1 reception, 7 yards
BenJarvus Green-Ellis—18 carries, 71 yards; 1 reception, 4 yards
The Law Firm had a considerably better game against Pittsburgh than he did against the Chicago Bears, but it was still mediocre at best. He collected 75 yards on 22 carries, well under four yards per carry.
No one expected Green-Ellis to be some 1,300-yard rusher in Cincinnati, so I guess his performance Monday night is about what we can hope for from him.
What you can say about Green-Ellis is that he is a power back who can pound the ball in from the goal line. Further, he did show at points last season that he can break loose for big runs. For now, he's the seasoned veteran on the team and should perform to his norm against Green Bay.
Giovani Bernard—9 carries, 67 yards, TD; 3 receptions, 23 yards
On Monday night, the Bengals' second-round selection came through in a big way, representing the lone offensive production from Cincinnati. Bernard saw considerably more action in Week 2, and boy did it pay off for Jay Gruden's offense.
What I've noticed about Bernard early on is how hard he hits the line when he gets the ball. Like a ball of fire, he takes off right through the line and past defenders, hence his success in his limited time.
He also was able to use his incredible speed to take a short pass 27 yards to the house in Monday night's game, and after what he showed, I don't expect him to see less time.
From here on out, expect Bernard's appearances and opportunities to increase.
Andy Dalton—28-of-42, 321 yards, 3 TD; 4 carries, 15 yards
At first glance, Andy Dalton's Week 2 performance against the Pittsburgh Steelers wasn't all that bad—he collected 280 yards and a touchdown.
Unfortunately, anyone who watched the game knows that he struggled and was uncomfortable in the pocket. I expect The Red Rifle to fix those problems and go toe-to-toe with the Packers.
Dalton may not be an elite quarterback in this league, but he's shown flashes of greatness at points in his career. In Week 3, he'll be going up against a Green Bay secondary that allowed RG3 to throw for over 300 yards and Colin Kaepernick to rack up over 400.
So long as Dalton can evade Clay Matthews and B.J. Raji, he should be able to find all of his receivers. A.J. Green and Mohamed Sanu are good enough to escape the Green Bay coverage, and the middle will be wide open for the tight ends.
Dalton will earn some much-needed respect this week if he can keep up with the Green Bay offense.
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