The Cincinnati Bengals have a tough game Thursday night, facing J.J. Watt and the Houston Texans. Since both offenses are struggling, this looks to be a low scoring game
Andy Dalton had the worst game in his career opening week, throwing 4 interceptions and fumbling against the Ravens. The Bengals offensive line seems like it is going to struggle tremendously against Watt and the Texans D-line. However, the Texans defense in week 1 did not look like itself. Texans on their home field lost 29-7 to Jacksonville. Rookie running back Leonard Fournette had 100 rushing yards and a touchdown. The Jaguars have improved, but they’re not an all star team yet.
If the Texans defense struggled that badly again the Jaguars, it certainly means that the Bengals can beat them. To make thing worse for the Texans, linebacker Brian Cushing is suspended for 10 weeks for Performance Enhancing Drugs.
Texans LB Brian Cushing suspended without pay for team’s next 10 games for violating NFL policy on performance enhancing substances.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 13, 2017
The Bengals have one of the best Wide Receivers in the game in A.J. Green. Cincinatti also has Brandon LaFell, a very reliable number number 2 Wide out, as well as Tyler Eifert who’s one of the best tight ends in the league when healthy, Tyler Boyd, and possibly rookie John Ross, who is currently questionable. That’s just the pass game. The Bengals also have running backs Jeremy Hill, Giovani Bernard, and rookie Joe Mixon. If the Jaguars can score that much on the Texans, so can the Bengals offense.
This game comes down to the offensive line and Andy Dalton. The offensive line struggled against the Ravens giving up 5 sacks. Starting right guard Trey Hopkins is an out with a knee injury. If they don’t give time to Dalton, he will struggle. In Dalton’s first couple of years in the NFL, he struggled in prime time/big games. He has improved over the years, but he can never seem to get to his “daytime” level. It’s up to the Bengals offensive line and Andy Dalton to get a win, as the defense can’t do it all.
The Bengals’ defense performed quite well week 1. They kept the Bengals in the game. Offense kept putting them in bad position. A fun matchup to watch will be Adam Jones vs DeAndre Hopkins. Jones has proved to be a solid cornerback, as Hopkins has proved to be a top wide receiver. Hopkins and the other receivers will have rookie Deshaun Watson throwing them the ball. Savage started for the Texans last week, but after halftime Watson was put in and preformed much better. As a result, Watson will start
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) September 11, 2017
The Texans quarterbacks were the most pressured quarterbacks last week…
Highest pressured quarterbacks in Week 1:
1. Tom Savage 57.9%
2. Deshaun Watson 55.2%
31. Ben Roethlisberger 8.1%
— Steve Palazzolo (@PFF_Steve) September 14, 2017
This is not good news for the Texans, Bengals have a very solid defensive line starting with Geno Atkins and Carlos Dunlap. Despite Burfict being suspended, the linebacking core looked solid with free against addition Kevin Minter, Vincent Rey and Nick Vigil.
Other than Deandre Hopkins, Texans are very thin at wide receiver. Will Fuller is out, so Braxton Miller needs to step up. This wide receiving core should be handed by the Bengals secondary
On paper, this should be a win for the Bengals, but you never know with Andy Dalton.