Cincinnati Bengals Week 1 Play-By-Play Analysis

B. Clifton BurkeCorrespondent ISeptember 14, 2009

CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 13: A general view of Paul Brown Stadium as a fly over takes place during the National Anthem prior to the game between the Denver Broncos against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on September 13, 2009 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)

Roy Williams prevents huge run on first play by Buckhalter.

Geathers on nice run stuff.

Marshall drops screen pass

No pass rush, nice coverage by Crocker.

First play of the year is a run up the middle for no gain.  Imagine that.

Second play is run off tackle for no gain.

Good pass protection; 18 yards to Slim over the middle.

Nice pass to Chad on medium slant route.

Benson shows nice vision by bouncing the run to the outside for a good gain; brought back by Chad's hold.

Coates drops bullet pass.

Benson with nice off-tackle run.  Good blocking.

Good pass-protection; slightly errand pass; Coles gets fingers on it but no catch; fourth down & punting.

*Drive was killed by holding penalty.

Poor punt; first one ever.

Boring 6-yard run; Tank with a good tackle.

Rivers with great pursuit on outside run; no gain.

Odom with deflected pass; forced to punt.

Cosby with good punt return after fielding on bounce; one ankle tackle away from a big one.

Palmer with lots of time on play-action, finds Chad on the sidelines on a great play that was brought back b/c of an ineligible man down field.

Benson with a strong, power run on Whit's side; puts head down and blasts for extra yards.

Another nice run, this one in gap between Livings & Cook. 13 yards on last two runs.

Coles drops easy first down catch, nearly leads to a pick.  Fourth down and forced to punt.

Awesome fake-punt/wildcat thing to Leonard for a first down.  Awesome.

Play-action on first down; wanted to go long; Palmer scrambled a bit, but kept his cool and found Benson on a check off to the sideline; Benson juked a defender and gained a good chunk of YAC.

Bubble screen to Caldwell for 6 or so on a play that Housh used to run.

Run behind Livings for two.

Stretch run to Leonard for nothing on an awful play-call.  Fourth down. 

*The two play-actions on first down were great on this drive, as was Leonard's fake, but running a stretch run on third & 2 on the 11-yard line in the red zone to our “power back”, makes no sense here.

Huber can't catch a slightly below average snap on FG try; loss of like 50.

Fanene sacks Orton on play-action by beating RT on the outside.  Decent juke-move to get to him

Dhani over-pursues on pass across middle to Marshall.  Roy cleans up.

Geathers knocks Clady on his ass, flushes Orton out of pocket and Odom cleans up for the sack.  Fourth down.

Cosby runs straight for yardage; doesn't dance.

Palmer to Chad on sideline for nice gain, but Chad opts to run to the middle of the field instead of going out of bounds and picks up big yardage.   He looks explosive and more willing to get hit.

End of 1stQuarter; Bengals crushing in yardage and TOP, but holding call, dropped third down pass and botched FG= no points in three drives. 

Collins gets beat by A. Davis on sack, right after the big play to Chad; momentum ruined.

Benson on nice cut-back for 7 or so; good vision.

Long pass attempt broken up by rookie corner back.  Slightly under-thrown but good try.

Ok punt by Huber.

Crocker ankle tackles Gaffney on screen for no yards.

Orton play-action, Pat Sims pursues,  goes deep to Marshall, nice coverage by Hall, through Marshall's hands though it would have been a very difficult catch.  Roy Williams was a step slow.

Pass deflected by Geathers, Dhani tackles Gaffney, fourth down.

First-down check-off pass to Benson for 7.  Good decision.

Run for zip up the middle.  JJ didn't get enough of his man.  Denver knew it was a run even though it was a soft delay run. 

Coates sneaks out of backfield for good yardage.  I worried about him fumbling as he rumbled for a good 10 or more yards after the catch.

Benson showed speed turning the corner on first down off-tackle run.  8 yards, Gus Johnson got excited.

Quick, backward screen to B. Scott that was sniffed out from the get-go; loss of 6 and questionable play-call.  Andre Davis was not having it.

*Again, the play design to Coates, was actually very good (even though I don't like throwing to him), but when B. Scott checked into the game, the Denver defense perked up and followed him outside on the screen.  I understand that they want to use him, but it's still important to remain sneaky and not so deliberate on their play-calling.

Palmer moves well outside of the pocket and finds Coles on the sideline for a first-down.  Palmer looks really good on the run today; not freaking out.

Benson up the middle for 3.  Not bad.  Fans don't like it, but you need some of this for a variety of reasons. 

Benson up the middle for nothing.  You don't need it that much; bad play call.

Palmer to Chad on slant with 1-on-1 coverage with Champ; Champ get's there sooner, tips ball up and Chad wimps out on jump ball and allows an interception.

*Fourth squandered drive.  Could at least be 12-0.

Maualuga on nice take down for no gain on run.  Waited for runner to come to him.

Rey on good pursuit to sideline on bubble-screen; Roy pops Royal on clean up tackle.

Awesome pass coverage by B. Johnson on third down.  He's good at that. 

*I like Zim putting Johnson in there on passing downs.

Benson up the middle for nothing.  Poor play-call.

Reverse to Chad who looked more scared than dangerous.  Palmer didn't make a good block.  Weird play for 8 yards.  At least it's different. 

*They shouldn't run that play again for at least 3 weeks so it doesn't become predictable the way it use to be.

Benson up the middle who fought for a first down.

Benson on nice off-tackle behind Whit for 6 yards.  Whit blocked two Broncos on the play.  Whit moved to right tackle for that play.

Quick out to Benson for nothing. 

Bad pass to Caldwell; behind him. Dunno if it was intentionally thrown that way.  Doubt it.  Have to punt.

Average punt.

8 yard Buckhalter run.  One of the longer runs for Denver on the day.

Tank on good wrap up but still a first down.

Pat Sims gets back down field on screen and makes nice tackle to keep screen from developing.  The big guy can move.

Great coverage near the sideline by Hall on B. Stokely. Quickness looks fine.

Royal converts third down on shifty screen.  B. Johnson cleans up.

Orton has lots of time and finds Gaffney wide open on sideline against zone.  No pass rush and soft zone=big yardage.

Leon Hall knocks ball loose for incompletion.  Almost a fumble that woulda been a touchdown by Ndukwe.  Almost.

Tank Johnson smothers Moreno for no gain on run.

Good from 48 to end half. Their guy has good range.

Bengals look good at the half but have no points.  They're getting yardage, and look great on defense but they keep stalling when it matters most. 

Bad pass to Chad on screen.

Check off to Benson for 6 or so.  Good hands on the catch.

Quick slant to Chad on hot read for first down.  Nice on both ends.

Play-action, Palmer wanted deep ball settled for check off to JJ who dropped it.  Good play call.

Quick pass to Foschi.  Don't know why he gets passes and not Coffman.

Great pass-protection (especially Coates); great throw, dropped pass by Coles.  Fourth down.

Good Punt.  Brad St. Louis on tackle.

Odom tackle for loss. (the guy slipped)

Nice drag down by Geathers.

Good prevent on third and long, Crocker makes tackle.  Fourth down.

Awful punt for Denver.

Benson on nice run behind B. Williams for 6.

Palmer sacked, Benson missed block.  Loss of over ten.  Haggen with the sack.

Palmer sacked again.  Collins gives up second sack.

Great punt by Huber.

Roy on good run support.

Dhani misses tackle to allow Graham's first down.

Pitch play to Moreno and Roy knocks him silly and causes fumbled that was ruled down.  Huge hit.

Rey misses tackle and allows gashing run by Buckhalter.

Rey unloads on Marshall.  Love this guy.

Fanene tackle for loss on hand off.

Roy on decent coverage on strange third down play by Denver.  Incomplete.

Pitch play to Benson that loses yards on first down.

Terrible pass to JJ that was very close to a pick that would have been a TD.  Really stupid attempt under pressure.  Needs to throw out of bounds instead.

Caldwell almost makes it to a first on completion, but no.   Punt.

Scheffler wide open in zone coverage; good gain of 25 or so.  I hate zone coverage.

Dhani on nice run stuff.

Rey so close to first sack on ankle tackle.  Orton scrambles for 3.

Stokely drop.  50 yrd fg.

Caldwell not a good return. 

Beautiful play-action roll out play, Palmer throws on the run, hits Chad in stride for about 20 yards.  Brought back for off. PA.   Nice play-call; good looking play design.

End of third quarter.  Bengals still have stat advantage but some player mistakes are killing them.

Caldwell over the middle. Good game for him.

Brian Leonard on shovel pass.  Nice play-call again.

Short throw to Caldwell on third down no good.  Not a great decision.  Punt.

Roy on nice tackle to Hillis for a short passing gain.

Rivers on big hit to force incompletion. 

Marshall gets easy receiving third down conversion. 

Rey with nice run-stop for nothing.

Bengals pass rush leads to holding call.

Roy misses on safety blitz; Orton buys time and makes first down completion.  Gotta make that sack.

Roy on safety blitz up the middle, Buckhalter catches check off and runs for long first down.  B. Johnson misses tackle.  Brought back from holding call.

Odom with a huge sack.  Inside pass-rush move, squeezes through and pushes Broncos out of FG range  with sack.  Huge.


Run up the middle for three.  Fans hate it.  Gives them room.

Quick slant to Chad for first.

Hand off to Benson for loss.  Awful play call.

Great throw to Chad for a first on a long hook route. Nice protection.

Benson with a big off-tackle run for over 20 yards.  Weird two fullback formation; great block by JJ and Whit.

Palmer play-actions, finds no one and settles for a three yard scramble.

Caldwell on hook route in the slot over the middle.  Housh-like again.

Dump off to Leonard for good yardage.

Caldwell on quick out route for seven.

Caldwell on curl route just short of goal line.

Benson TD on power run.  JJ with good block.

Joseph with great pick but just out of bounds.  Should have been challenged. 

Shit happens.  Bengals lose.


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