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3 critical matchups to follow for Bills vs. Bengals | Scouting Report

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3 CRITICAL MATCHUPS

John Ross vs. Tre'Davious White

Cincinnati's deep threat has been just that. In two games he six receptions of 20 yards or more and three touchdown catches of 30 yards or more, including a 66-yarder last week against San Francisco. Tre'Davious White said Ross is "blazing," and he's right. Ross ran a record 4.22 40-time at the Combine in 2017.

Bills run game vs. Bengals run defense

Buffalo's run game is ranked ninth in the league after two solid performances. Devin Singletary's injury status could impact the advantage here for the Bills, but Cincinnati's tackling has been inconsistent the past two weeks, and they were crossed up by the 49ers two-back scheme. It's why they're giving up a gaudy 165 rushing yards per game and rank 30th against the run.

John Miller vs. Ed Oliver

The former Bills guard is starting at right guard for the Bengals. He has struggled the first two weeks and might be starting at his most difficult assignment this season in Oliver. The rookie's explosiveness and strength could overwhelm Miller if he doesn't get double team help.

2 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT THE OPPONENT

No run, all pass

The Cincinnati offense under new head coach Zac Taylor has been wildly productive through the air averaging 343 yards per game, which is second only to Kansas City. The Bengals problem is their inability to run the ball as they've managed a total of 59 rushing yards on 33 carries (1.8 avg.) to rank last in the league. As a result, Taylor has called pass plays a league leading 76 percent of the time and run plays a league low 24 percent of the time.

Shuffled deck on O-line

The Bengals offensive line has been a shuffled deck since the spring when projected starting left tackle, first-round pick Jonah Williams sustained a shoulder injury in the spring that required surgery. Then guards Clint Boling and Christian Westerman retired.

Backup LT Cordy Glenn has been in concussion protocol since the start of the season leaving OT Andre Smith to fill in. This past week LG Michael Jordan sustained a knee injury and is out this week.

Billy Price is expected to step in at left guard.

1 THING THAT COULD DECIDE THE GAME

Buffalo's pass rush

If the Bills can succeed in shutting down Cincinnati's run game the way Seattle and San Francisco did the first two weeks of the season, Buffalo's pass rush could generate some game-changing pressure on Andy Dalton. The Bengals quarterback has been sacked nine times in two games and has three fumbles, with two resulting in turnovers. All told, Dalton is the second-most sacked quarterback in the league and third most-hurried (26) quarterback in the NFL.

Undercurrents

  • A.J. Green is not expected to return from an ankle injury anytime soon. He told Bengals.com that it could take longer than the reported six to eight weeks. Green said he wants to make sure it's 100 percent.
  • The health of Joe Mixon's ankle was called into question last week after a subpar performance against the 49ers. Mixon injured the ankle in the Week 1 game at Seattle, and by most accounts did not look 100 percent last Sunday. He had 17 yards on 11 carries last week.
  • Cincinnati has the second-longest active road losing streak at six games. Only Miami with seven straight road defeats has more.
  • Stretching back to last season the Bills have scored touchdowns on nine consecutive red zone possessions. It is the longest streak in the NFL.

As the Bills prepare to play at home against the Cincinnati Bengals, scroll through to view photos from previous matchups between the two opponents.

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