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Cedric Benson Suspension: Will Bernard Scott Dazzle in Benson's Absence?

CINCINNATI - SEPTEMBER 19:  Bernard Scott #28 of the Cincinnati Bengals carries the ball against the Baltimore Ravens at Paul Brown Stadium on September 19, 2010 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Bengals beat the Ravens 15-10.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Nicholas GossCorrespondent IOctober 30, 2011

With Cincinnati Bengals starting running back Cedric Benson serving a one-game suspension, Bernard Scott will start in his place, and he will be effective against the Seattle Seahawks.

Benson will serve the suspension for his misdemeanor assault cases which were actually settled before the season, and he is fifth in the NFL in carries going into Week 8.

The dilemma for the Bengals is how much will they run the ball against Seattle's No. 1 rushing defense, but offensive coordinator Jay Gruden isn't concerned with that.

"We'll try a little bit different things here, but we're going to be similar in how we attack," offensive coordinator Jay Gruden said. "If that means opening up formations a little bit to do it, we'll try that. We're not going to stop running the ball because they're good."

The start on Sunday will be Scott's third of his career, and on the season, he has 30 carries for 85 yards and a touchdown.

Even against the strong Seahawks rush defense, Scott will be effective because he is also a reliable pass-catcher, and rookie quarterback Andy Dalton will look to him on screen plays and short passes when the pocket collapses.

Scott is also a very good kick returner and had 1,257 yards on returns last season with four 40-plus yard runbacks.

Despite playing against a top defense, Scott will be effective on Sunday because of his versatility.

Not only will he get a good amount of carries, Scott will be used in the passing game, and if the Bengals choose, in the kick return game as well.

In a very noisy stadium in Seattle where the Seahawks have a distinctive home-field advantage, and with a young and inexperienced quarterback, the Cincinnati Bengals would be wise to make Bernard Scott a big part of their offensive game plan on Sunday.

If they do, he will reward them.


Nicholas Goss is a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter for the latest sports news and updates.   

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