I know there are not many Bengal fans that expected to win this one, but I at least expected them to be more competitive. The Bengals came out flat on Monday Night Football last night (how do you do that?) and played poorly most of the night. Sure, there are plenty of excuses…. The Patriots are possibly the best team in football, the Bengals had an unreal amount of injuries in the LB core to deal with, etc, but it all comes down to one thing. The Bengals were hosed again and did not seem to put up much of a fight.
The ESPN crew quoted defenseive captain John Thornton last night in the second half saying that Thornton felt the Bengals “did not know how to respond to adversity”, that they either were rock solid or just rolled over. Well, injuries or not, last night they rolled over.
- Special Teams – Yet again, special teams is a problem. The Bengals are one of the worst teams when it comes to return yardage allowed and if they continue that trend, this one could get real ugly. (Hey look at that, the special teams were not so horrible last night. It figures that they would do their job and then the defense not hold up their end of the bargain.)
- Kenny Watson – Career backup Kenny Watson is forced into the limelight tonight not only as a starter, but on the national stage vs the 3-0 Pats. If Watson can be effective on the ground and pass protect well, it will go a long way towards the Bengals being competitive in this contest. ( Watson looked good at times, but since the Bengals trailed the entire game, they were forced to mostly abandon the run early)
- Randy Moss vs. Bengals Secondary – On paper, this reads like a blowout. The Pats have not only scored in bunches through the air already but are always a threat to do so with Randy Moss. If the Bengals can somehow contain Moss, they could stay in this. ( Moss looked like a man among boys. He easily snagged two touchdowns and probably could have gotten more if needed. Ugly showing for the Bengals secondary.)
Much more of the fallout of this game to follow here very soon….