What We Saw: Week 7

The What We Saw team recaps everything you missed from Sunday's action

Falcons @ Bengals

Final Score: Bengals 35, Falcons 17

Writer: Chuck Steele (@ChuckSteele_T2T on Twitter)

 

The Atlanta Falcons flew into Cincinnati to take on the Bengals, looking to keep their season rolling in a division that truly seems up for grabs. With the Saints already losing this past Thursday night, and the Panthers shocking the Buccaneers, this was the chance for the Falcons to fly into sole possession of first place in the NFC South. However, the Bengals pounced early with a big play touchdown early on from Tyler Boyd who was one of many Bengals who enjoyed himself a big game. With the Bengals in control throughout the whole contest, and already at a score of 35-17, the Falcons only attempted 13 passes compared to 29 rushing attempts. Outside of a long touchdown right before the first half ended, the Falcons’ offense had a hard time getting anything going against the Bengals. Cincinnati seems to be picking up momentum, as it was their second game in a row putting up 30+ points this season.

 

Atlanta Falcons

 

Quarterback

 

Marcus Mariota: 8/13, 124 Yards, TD | 6 Carries, 31 Yards, 1 Fumble (Recovered)

 

It was quite a shock to see the Falcons play from behind the entire game and yet still only manage to attempt 13 passes on the night. Marcus Mariota had trouble getting the ball moving, and the play-calling wasn’t in his favor as the team decided to run the ball 29 times in a game that seemed out of hand by the end of the first half. Mariota dinked and dunked the majority of his passes Sunday afternoon. The 124 yards on eight completions may seem pretty but he accounted for over half of his yards on a lone touchdown pass of 75 yards to end the first half, bringing the game to within 11 right before the break. Contributing 31 yards on the ground, he still flashed his athletic skills and ability to move as a runner, hitting the defense with a nice shake and bake on the defender and securing the first down. He also fumbled once in the game, however, he was able to secure it and still find a hole to fall into for the first down.

 

Running Back

 

Tyler Allgeier: 16 Carries, 50 Yards, TD

Caleb Huntley: 6 Carries, 22 Yards

Avery Williams: 1 Carry, 4 Yards | 1 Target

 

The Falcons relied heavily on the rushing attack in this one, however, they couldn’t carry the team on their backs. Tyler Allgeier led the way, as the rookie saw a season-high in carries in his young career. He shows to be a tough runner, finding and hitting whatever hole the Falcons’ offensive line was able to open up for him. Even when he was met at the line of scrimmage, which was often, he was able to hit piles and drive them back instead of always being pushed back, gaining an extra yard or two on most runs. With no help, the lead back only managed a 3.1 average on the night. He was able to find the endzone for his first NFL touchdown. On a 3rd and goal from the one-yard line, after several failed attempts to get the score, Allgeier took flight as he jumped over both the offensive and defensive line to soar in for the touchdown.

 

 

Caleb Huntley saw little action, finishing behind Mariota in rushing yards with only 22 on the day. Avery Williams took his lone carry for four yards. Trying to ground and pound the Bengals, it was the Falcons’ running game that got stuffed.

 

Wide Receiver/Tight End

 

Damiere Byrd: 1 Target, 1 Reception, 75 Yards, TD

Olamide Zaccheaus: 4 Targets, 3 Receptions, 31 Yards

Kyle Pitts: 5 Targets, 3 Receptions, 9 Yards

Drake London: 1 Target, 1 Reception, 9 Yards

 

There was not much action from the wide receiving core today, as the Falcons only dropped back to pass 13 times in this one. Damiere Byrd led the team in yards, and touchdowns while securing just one catch. That catch happened to be a 75-yard touchdown right before halftime.

 

 

Byrd was able to beat his defender and get wide open where Mariota was able to throw the ball right into his lap as Byrd took it the rest of the way. It was his first catch on the season.

Olamide Zaccheaus had the more consistent night on the receiving end if you can even call it that. Taking 3 receptions for 31 yards. Kyle Pitts has yet to be truly featured in this Falcons offense. He did see a team-high in targets and was half an inch from scoring his second touchdown of the year on a quick pass to the outside but the Bengals’ defense was all over him and refused Pitts entry to the endzone. Rookie Drake London caught his lone target for nine yards. It was hard for any receiver to get anything going with such few opportunities to run routes and make plays.

 

Cincinnati  Bengals

 

Quarterback

 

Joe Burrow: 34/42, 481 Yards, 3 TD | 3 Carries, 20 Yards, TD

 

What a day it was for the Bengals’ offense, as their general Joe Burrow was electric and cooked the Falcon’s defense all game long. It started early, as Burrow found Tyler Boyd for a 60-yard touchdown pass on the first drive of the game.

 

 

After the slow start to the year, he’s starting to turn it around. Burrow plucked every feather on the Falcons’ defense. Having plenty of time in the pocket for most of the game, his ball placement was perfect was almost every throw, putting the ball where only his receivers could make the catch. He had two other touchdowns through the air. A beautifully thrown ball pulled in at the front right pylon to start the second quarter, and another on a comeback route that was then taken across the field en route to another score as the second half was winding down. Both were caught by none other than Ja’Marr Chase. Burrow sealed the fate of the Falcons on their first possession of the second half. The Bengals called a QB sneak at the goal line as Burrow and the offensive line easily pushed their way in for their final score of the game. It was a big four-touchdown day for Burrow as he and the Bengals continue to heat up.

 

 

Running Back

 

Joe Mixon: 17 Carries, 58 Yards, TD | 3 Targets, 3 Receptions, 33 Yards

Samaje Perine: 1 Carry | 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 8 Yards

 

It should surprise no one, but Joe Mixon was the lead back for Bengals. It was not one of his more productive days, turning in 58 yards on 17 carries but they didn’t need him to do much more. Despite giving up nearly 500 yards through the air, the Falcons’ defense played Mixon tough, never letting him burn them for big plays. He was able to secure a one-yard touchdown. After taking the handoff at the goal line, Mixon stumbled on his cut but was able to keep his balance and still punch in the score. He contributed in the passing game, being a safety blanket for the few times that Burrow did face pressure. He would have had another nice catch and run added to the day, but it was called back for an Illegal shift by the offense. Samaje Perine saw one carry but was unable to gain anything, but did secure both his targets for eight yards.

 

Wide Receiver/Tight End

 

Tyler Boyd: 9 Targets, 8 Receptions, 155 Yards, TD

Ja’Marr Chase: 11 Targets, 8 Receptions, 130 Yards, 2 TD

Tee Higgins: 7 Targets, 5 Receptions, 93 Yards

Hayden Hurst: 8 Targets, 6 Receptions, 48 Yards

Mitchell Wilcox: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 14 Yards

 

This receiving core had themselves a game, and they started early on. Tyler Boyd led the team in yards and was tied with the most receptions. Starting the game off with a bang, Boyd was able to burn passed his defender on the Bengals’ first drive of the game when Burrow found him streaking down the field and placed the ball perfectly in stride for Boyd to secure a 60-yard touchdown. Boyd was also just inches short of a second score but was brought down just inches before the goal line. He shined all day, making everything he did look just so beautiful, like the one-handed over-the-shoulder grab he had on the day.

 

 

Ja’Marr Chase saw most of the targets in this one and took full advantage. Chase added a pair of scores on the day, each in the second quarter. First, a 32-yard pass at the start of the quarter that was lofted down the sidelines to Chase who had a step on the defender, bringing in the reception right at the front pylon of the endzone. The second came closer to halftime, as Burrow hit Chase on a comeback. Chase was able to race across the field beating defenders giving chase, and taking the ball for a 46-yard score. Tee Higgins wasn’t able to join the touchdown party but found space in the defense to contribute his own big splash plays on the day. Tight End Hayden Hurst was provided to be a nice check-down option for Burrow. He is not making big plays like his wide receiver teammates, but with the volume that the Bengals pass with, his targets have been consistent throughout the season.

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