Getting past advanced metrics, play evaluation and other methods of determining an opinion, I just keep it simple with Cincinnati.
They’re a well-coached team (particularly on the defensive side of the ball) with a freakishly talented receiver on offense. Then I think of their quarterback.
Watching Andy Dalton, sometimes he appears to have the decision-making skills of a drunken Brett Favre. That makes him almost like his own team on the field; there’s the Bengals, their opponents, and Dalton, who plays some kind of heel and face role at once, deciding at some point which team he’ll favor.
One thing Dalton knows as well as any quarterback in the league is who his money maker is. He has little to no fear chucking the ball as high as he can, and letting A.J. Green go get it. Because A.J. Green has the springs of a freed gazelle but with more speed, he can make those plays.
How reliable is that kind of an offense, though?
Bengals coach Marvin Lewis clearly wants to add the running dimension to his Dalton-led offense, so he spent second-round pick on Giovanni Bernard – a multi-tool back who appears to be a good fit for, surprise surprise, the Bengals passing game. Just like Tyler Eifert, their first round pick.
Maybe Lewis doesn’t want to run the ball as much as analysts want to believe he does. Maybe he really will continue keeping up with the rest of the league and throw 35-plus times a game. Maybe that puts the Bengals over/under of wins at nine.
More from Behind the Steel Curtain:
- Suspects claim Mike Adams started confrontation night he was stabbed
- Weslye Saunders suspended eight games for violation of substance abuse policy
- Steelers training camp talkers: wide receivers have questions, like, what can Brown do for you?
- BTSC on AM 1390 the Sports Animal in Youngstown, Ohio
- Over/Under for wins in 2013: Cincinnati Bengals
- Steelers offensive line depth chart: Gilbert or Adams, either will be a better left tackle than Starks
- 5 Burning Questions left by a busy offseason
- If Steeler Nation ruled the world
- Steelers are not only ones expecting Emmanuel Sanders to 'make the leap'
- Former Steelers C Jeff Hartings says he faked his way through concussion tests
- Steelers ranked 15th in recent PFT power rankings