2010 NFL Preview: Cincinnati Bengals
The Cincinnati Bengals were the only team that expected great things out of themselves. Not many outside the locker room gave them a chance. But the Bengals surprised many by going 10-6 and winning the AFC North for the first time since 2005. However, in the regular season finale and the Wild Card game against the New York Jets, the Bengals did not look like team that went 6-0 against their division opponents.
One big reason Marvin Lewis and Carson Palmer and company were unable to do bigger things in Cincy was because they only had Chad Ochocinco as a weapon. When Ochocinco was out of the equation against Darrelle Revis and the Jets, the team had no other option at receiver. With the addition of Terrell Owens, can self-proclaimed duo of Batman & Robin take these Bengals to greater heights in the playoffs? Technorati goes inside the Cincinnati Bengals.
- 2009 Record: (10-6, 1st AFC North, reached playoffs (Wild Card))
- Key Additions: WR Antonio Bryant (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) , WR Matt Jones (free agency), WR Terrell Owens (Buffalo Bills), CB Adam Jones (free agency), FS Gibril Wilson (Miami Dolphins), K Mike Nugent (Tampa Bay Buccaneers).
- Key Departures: RB Larry Johnson (Washington Redskins), WR Laveranues Coles (New York Jets), WR Chris Henry (death), WR Antonio Bryant (free agency), TE J.P, Foschi (Buffalo Bills), CB Keiwan Ratliff (free agency), K Shayne Graham (Baltimore Ravens).
Offense: There are beliefs that quarterback Carson Palmer is a shell of his former self, since the Bengals passing attack ranked near the bottom of the NFL. Palmer says that his arm is better than ever after the multiple injuries to his arm in the past. In the last appearance for Cincinnati in the playoffs prior this season, Palmer had his knee shredded on a hit by Kimo von Oelhoffen four years ago against the Steelers. With added weapons to the passing game, Palmer is hoping he can have a better year on offense passing the ball. There is no reason that he should, as long as egos are in check, and everyone gets the ball, things should work out just fine.
The Bengals got a huge surprise addition in the running game in 2009 when Cedric Benson came back from his troubles to rush for 1,251 yards. Benson's ability to break free in the open field and get a second chance with the Bengals. However he did get arrested in the offseason for allegedly assaulting someone, but luckily for him (and for the team), the NFL is not going to suspend him for violating the personal conduct policy. Even so, Bernard Scott has done a good job backing up Benson and being there when he was out.Continued on the next page