It’s going to be an ugly day for the Cincinnati Bengals when the New England Patriots come to town. One team has been ravaged by injuries, murder charges, and free agency, and oddly, the other is the mess looking for their identity.
The Bengals are an extremely talented team but frankly are very lucky to be 2-2. A visit from the winless Pittsburgh Steelers and the sloppiest performance in recent memory from the Green Bay Packers have Cincy tied for the lead in the feeble AFC North. The Bengals have the talent for a good offense but have underperformed big time thus far.
Ranked 22nd in both total offense and points per game is a major disappointment from a team with such high expectations. On top of that, only four teams have given the ball away more than Cincinnati. The Bengals’ defense is not going to hold up with that much pressure being applied to them.
New England, on the other hand, is building chemistry and getting stronger every week. The Patriots were fortunate to escape a couple of ugly performances with wins early on in the season, but in their last two contests, they’ve looked like the contender everyone expects them to be.
It’s no secret the Pats are a throw-first team, and it was only going to be a matter of time before Tom Brady got all the relative strangers in the passing game in sync with each other. They’ve still got some room to grow, but each week the inexperienced pass-catchers are taking major leaps forward.
New England is going to come into the Cincy’s house and give them a beat down. The Pats are coming together and the Bengals are coming apart. Andy Dalton is not far off from being lumped into the Philip Rivers, Tony Romo category of quarterbacks who just can’t get it done. Yes he’s still young, but he needs to start making plays when the team needs him or he’ll be lucky to have a job. Six-point performances against teams like the Cleveland Browns are a big step toward the sideline.