Cincinnati Bengals: Biggest Weaknesses, Strengths
Today, the subject is the Cincinnati Bengals.
Biggest Strength: Cornerback
The Bengals have used two first round picks in past years on their starting corner backs Johnathan Joseph and Leon Hall.
Let us start with Joseph. The former 2006 first round pick has explosive quickness about him. Perhaps the latter is the best reason his cover skills are so first-rate.
Another skill that makes Joseph one of the best in the game are his quarterback awareness. Look at this ball thrown by Ben Roethlisberger. Holmes and Big Ben were not on the same page, but Joseph still needed to make a play on the ball.
Joseph made six interceptions this past season. That tied him with his counterpart, among others, for fifth in the league.
Joseph's accomplice is none other than Leon Hall. The former first round pick is literally the same exact size as Joseph.
Hall doesn't have wonderful speed. Hall isn't a liability in man coverage, but it puts his margin of error lower than Joseph.
The play that you are about to see will show you Hall's superb leaping ability in zone coverage .
Hall is a definite playmaker. Since entering the league, Hall has accounted for a total of fourteen interceptions and three forced fumbles.
David Jones will probably serve as a nickel corner. Jones did make some solid plays in limited playing time a season ago. However, he has some competition from rookie Brandon Ghee and newcomer Adam "Pacman" Jones.
Other Strengths: RB, G, TE, OLB, DT
Biggest Weakness: Kicker
Since I don't think that there is a glaring hole in terms of skill positions, I decided to go with special teams.
Do not dismiss this. Shayne Graham wasn't re-signed this off-season for a reason. Graham missed two field goals in the AFC Wild Card game against the Jets, effectively ending the Bengals season.
Considering the lesser talent Cincinnati brought in to replace Graham, they might wish they would have.
Mike Nugent and Dave Rayner will be having a competition in training camp. In the past two seasons, they are a combined 20-31 in field goal kicks.
That equates to a 64 percent average. There is one word for that: terrible.
In five games last season, the scoring margin was a field goal. Their record was 3-2 in those games. In the Oakland debacle, Graham missed one field goal, which would later prove to be the winning score by the opposition.
This is not an offense that will blow you out. Don't be surprised if the Bengals' downfall is again the kicking game.
Other Weaknesses: QB, WR, S
This is the seventh of a 32-part series where I determine the biggest strength and weakness of every NFL team. To view previous editions, click the following links:
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