November 28, 2014

Injuries + Fate = ‘Uh oh’

Who Dey indeed my friends.  Two W’s in the column puts us at a beautiful 7-5.  It’s not 10-2 but we’ll take what we get.  I think of last year and say, ‘We only need two more wins and we can make it in.’  However, 9-7 just isn’t gonna cut it this year.  Two teams stand in our way: Colts and Steelers.  Anyone who says that the division is up for grabs must be holding onto some magic fairy dust that the rest of us don’t know about (no offense Bill).  The Ravens will adjust and they will win the division.  So who’s goin’ down, the Steelers, the Colts or us?

The Raiders game went just like we hoped.  Offense looked great, defense took care of business and the fans gave Palmer a rude welcome home.  I didn’t have a voice by the end of the 1st quarter but I had plenty of beverages to help me keep my section on it’s feet for the whole game.  Couldn’t have been happier.  Then the first disaster struck…

Just like it seems like we’ve finally got things under control something happens.  That something was Sanu’s foot.  Apparently you can break your foot by running at practice.  We know this because Sanu did it.  It was becoming clear that Sanu was the #2 we were looking for…but not for the rest of this season.  No problem we said, we’ve got another rookie and we think that will be just fine.  So Jones stepped in and Hawkins came back but it was clear that the passing game was not going to be same.  The first thing that went wrong in SD was Dalton.  He was not playing like the top caliber QB that he has been.  His interception that he threw to Green on a slant was a rookie mistake.  He was hell bent on throwing that ball to Green before the snap and NEVER went through any progression.  That’s the Dalton that contributed to 4 losses at the beginning of the year and he needs to go away.  The second INT was a dropped pass by Marvin Jones…that’s on him.  However, defense prevailed, allowing no offensive TDS, and our offense did pick it up in the second half to eek out a win.  Then it happened again…

Our backup RB Peerman is out and there is no indication when he will return.  Cedric is the guy who gave that change of pace to Green-Ellis which contributed to his last 3 100-yard games.  Now Daniel Herron is our 3rd back and Leonard is up to 2.  I love Brian Leonard…but not as a 3rd down back.  I don’t know how productive he’s going to be on first and second down…mostly because he never has been.  So to sum up…our QB had a bad game, we lost an incredibly productive WR and RB.  Our offense doesn’t need another blow.  What’s going to happen this week?  Let’s just say that I think ‘John from Kentucky’s prediction we’ll be coming earlier then he thought.  Scroll down to check it out.

Week 1: Mon, Sep 10 – Cincinnati at Baltimore Ravens, 7 p.m. ET (ESPN)

13-44  L 0-1

1-0 on Picks

Week 2: Sun, Sep 16 – Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)

37-27   W 1-1

2-0 on Picks

Week 3: Sun, Sep 23 – Cincinnati at Washington Redskins, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)

38-31 W 2-1

3-0 on Picks

Week 4: Sun, Sep 30 – Cincinnati at Jacksonville Jaguars, 4:05 p.m. ET (CBS)

27-10 W 3-1

4-0 on Picks

Week 5: Sun, Oct 7 – Miami Dolphins at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)

17-13  L 3-2

4-1 on Picks

Week 6: Sun, Oct 14 – Cincinnati at Cleveland, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)

34-24 L 3-3

4-2 on Picks

Week 7: Sun, Oct 21 – Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati, 8:20 p.m. ET (NBC)

12-17 L 3-4

4-3 on Picks

Week 8BYE

Week 9: Sun, Nov 4 – Denver Broncos at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)

31-23 L 3-5

4-4 on Picks

Week 10: Sun, Nov 11 – New York Giants at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)

31-13 W 4-5

4-5 on Picks

Week 11: Sun, Nov 18 – Cincinnati at Kansas City Chiefs, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)

28-6 W 5-5

5-5 on Picks

Week 12: Sun, Nov 25 – Oakland Raiders at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)

34-10 W 6-5

6-5 on Picks

Week 13: Sun, Dec 2 – Cincinnati at San Diego Chargers, 4:15 p.m. ET (CBS)

20-13 W 7-5

7-5 on Picks

Week 14: Sun, Dec 9 – Dallas Cowboys at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)

I don’t like the Cowboys.  It’s nothing personal but they are one of those teams in the NFL that truly CAN win or lose on any given Sunday.  They’re great, they’re horrible and they’re everywhere in between.  Last week they beat the Eagles in a heated battle but somehow came up on top.  Tony Romo is a good QB and he’s got weapons in Bryant and Witten.  Our rush defense is top shelf but our secondary still needs some work.  If they give those guys opportunities then they’ll make us pay.

As for our offense; we have no room for errors.  Dalton can’t have a bad or even mediocre game.  He’s got to be good…really good.  No picks and plenty of yards.  I’m worried that without Peerman our running game is going to look one dimensional and we won’t hit 100 yards like we have in the previous 3 games.  This is why Dalton has to be back on his game.  He’s going to need Hawkins and Gresham.  These are the two guys (besides A.J.) that we know Dalton can rely on.  This week will also be ‘Marvin Jones: Take 2′.  He only had 2 catches for 20 yards last week and he missed a pass that caused an INT.  He’s going to need to step up if he wants to keep that starting spot.  I hope I’m wrong, but I think we drop back one this week.  This game is going to be won by the team that is truly the best ALL AROUND; offense and defense.  I’m just not sure if we’re up to it this week.  Bengals fall 20-24.

L 7-6

Week 15: Thu, Dec 13 – Cincinnati at Philadelphia Eagles, 8:20 p.m. ET (NFL)

W 8-6

Week 16: Sun, Dec 23 – Cincinnati at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)

W 9-6

Week 17: Sun, Dec 30 – Baltimore at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)

W 10-6

Comments

  1. Bill says:

    Calling me out, huh? I see how it is… *grin*

    As Obama would say, “let me be clear”. I’m not predicting the Redskins to upset the Ravens. (It would be an upset, although I don’t think it would be as big of an upset as most.) If the Ravens win Sunday, they will win the division. But if by chance they don’t, the division could very well be in play because I don’t think they can beat the Broncos.

  2. FanStuckInIndy says:

    I realize that it is easy to fall into the trap of believing that because Sanu had the sudden success that he did, that he is the answer for our perceived need for a true number two. I also know that the club has to list ‘someone’ as their #2 receiver on their depth chart. Sanu does bring something a little different to the game that other receiver options may not, but both Marvin Jones and Andrew Hawkins bring something that Sanu does not. Bengals just need to rely on what these two can bring, and game plan around that. An adjustment, yes, but I do not believe that there is a sense with the Bengals that they have lost a receiver that cannot be replaced. Sanu’s success was very sudden, and his ability to produce would likely have wained just a bit as teams began to find an answer for him anyway. Mixing it up with varying receiver options is really one of the biggest strengths this club has to offer given the style of offense they are trying to get to. As far as the running game goes, perhaps more throws to RB’s is what they need to run. Law Firm has very capable pass-receiving hands, and is even quite effective in catching passes in stride with a linebacker chasing after him. It will not be as easy to reduce the Bengals offense to one-dimensional as it appears – if they do not beat themselves by turning over the ball.