Thursday, October 31, 2013
Top stats to know: Bengals at Dolphins
By ESPN Stats & Information
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images
Since Week 6, Andy Dalton
has the most passing touchdowns (11) and the second-highest Total QBR (89.2) in the NFL.
The Cincinnati Bengals and Miami Dolphins will kick off Week 9 on Thursday night. The teams are trending in opposite directions. Miami has dropped its past four games, while Cincinnati has won its past four contests.
1. Andy Dalton’s play has been key to the Bengals' recent surge. Dalton has thrown for more than 300 yards and three touchdowns in three straight games.
He is the only quarterback in Bengals history to accomplish that within a season, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
Dalton has completed 65.2 percent of his passes 15-plus yards downfield in his past four games, nearly double his rate in the first four games. The league-average completion percentage on those passes is 41 percent.
2. Helping fuel Dalton have been two surprise weapons, Marvin Jones and rookie Giovani Bernard.
Jones has caught all eight of his red zone targets for seven touchdowns this season. He is the only player in the league to catch all of his red zone targets (minimum of five targets).
Bernard has given the Bengals a receiving threat out of the backfield. Bernard has 26 receptions this season, including 14 during the winning streak.
No Bengals running back had caught more than 20 passes from Dalton in a season entering this year. Bernard is one of seven players this season to average 9.0 yards after the catch (minimum 20 receptions).
3. The Dolphins started off this season strong, going 3-0 for the first time since 2002. They have lost four straight games since, their longest losing streak since they lost their first seven games of the 2011 season.
In their past four games they have turned the ball over 10 times, the fourth-most by any team in the NFL. The Dolphins have converted only 30.9 percent of their third downs during this losing streak; before that they converted half of their third downs.
4. Ryan Tannehill has been sacked 32 times this season, most in the NFL. The more alarming stat is that opponents are doing this without bringing additional pressure.
Tannehill has been sacked on 10.2 percent of his dropbacks against four or fewer pass-rushers this season, the highest rate in the league. In the past two seasons, only the 49ers have more sacks (52) with such pressure than the Bengals (51).
5. There is some reason for Dolphins fans to be optimistic. Both of the Bengals' losses this season have come on the road. They are allowing almost 10 more points per game in road contests this season. The Bengals' defense has forced only two turnovers in four road games this season compared to 10 in four home games.