The Cincinnati Bengals scored 39 points in their first preseason game, and they still lost by two to the Kansas City Chiefs. For their opponent, the New York Jets, they would’ve traded places with the Bengals just to say that their new offense has the ability to put up 39 points a game.
Talk about two teams on the different end of the spectrum, but the Jets and the Bengals will face off on Saturday night as the Bengals hope for some more defense and the Jets hope for more offense following its 13 point performance against the Indianapolis Colts.
If the Bengals can score anywhere close to 39 points again on the Jets in their Week 2 matchup, the Jets are going to be in big trouble once the regular season begins. It’s been a tough week for Gang Green. The Jets lost rookie cornerback Dexter McDougle for the entire season, and their new No. 1 CB is Dee Milliner is slated to miss a few weeks. The Jets have one giant question that needs an answer — who is going to step up and play well in their absence? If no one can fill the shoes of McDougle and Milliner, then Andy Dalton and company may find themselves with a lot of open holes and big plays in the Jets’ depleted secondary.
Speaking of the man with the new contract, Dalton, it will be interesting to see if his weapons from last year can be even more lethal in 2014. Marvin Jones is penciled in as the No. 2 receiver, but Mohamed Sunu can make a run for his money if he has a strong preseason. Sunu has a great opportunity to have a big game against a Jets’ defense that is scrambling to find a band-aid to put on their wound to stop any more bleeding in the secondary.
In the Bengals’ secondary, keep an eye on their talented first round pick Darquez Dennard, who head coach Marvin Lewis claimed as the ‘Best rookie corner’ he has seen. Speaking of rookies, watch out for RB Jeremy Hill, the No. 55 pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. He could find himself with 10-15 touches a game as the No. 2 back if he keeps playing well. Hill had 27 rushing yards on five carries in the team’s first game, and he wants to make his case for some playing time once the regular season begins.
The Jets need someone to breakout in Week 2 if they want to keep up with the prolific Bengals’ offense.
Eric Decker and Jace Amaro were average in the team’s first preseason game, but the Jets need those guys to get on track and play even better. Someone like Jets rookie WR Jalen Saunders should embrace the chance for a breakout; he is small, but he also has some big play potential. Look for RB Chris Johnson to have a better game this time around too. He had a few carries in the team’s first preseason game for positive yards, but I expect him to break a big run in Week 2, get fans excited, and prove to them that he still has some wheels.
Michael Vick and Geno Smith will continue to take turns again under center, and I think both of them will play well. Vick had a nice game in Week 1, but he wasn’t incredible, he was just good. Smith needs to come out on fire against the Bengals and silence everyone that is chirping for Vick to be the regular season stater for the Jets.
There is a lot to watch for in this Week 2 matchup, and let’s see which guys step up and stand out on Saturday night at 7 p.m.