- James Walker, ESPN Staff Writer
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Posted by ESPN.com's James Walker
CINCINNATI -- The Bengals and New Orleans Saints are at halftime with the Saints leading 10-0.
Since it's the third preseason game for both teams, the starters played the first half. Here are some highlights:
Cincinnati's first-team offense struggled for the second straight week. The unit came in with a four-possession scoreless streak that reached nine in the first half tonight. The Bengals were without tailback Rudi Johnson (hamstring) and starting receivers Chad Johnson (shoulder) and T.J. Houshmandzadeh (hamstring), and it hurt. None of the replacements stepped up for Cincinnati.
New Orleans also picked apart Cincinnati's pass defense. Saints quarterback Drew Brees had a good first half, completing 14-of-22 passes for 199 yards and a touchdown in the period. The biggest play was a 54-yard bomb to receiver Robert Meachem and a 35-yard pass to Lance Moore.
Part of the reason Brees was so successful in the first half was because the Bengals lacked a pass rush. The Bengals have zero sacks in the first half and on several passing downs Brees was able to sit in the pocket and wait for someone to get open.