Despite a win on Sunday that has the Bengals one game short of their win total for all of 2010, Marvin Lewis was as careful as ever with his words on Monday to make sure the team is focused on the task at hand this week, and that’s the winless Indy Colts.
“We’ve got a lot of improvement to do. We weren’t really pleased with how we played consistently in (any) of our three phases,” Lewis said. “Up front offensively, defensively or at all times on special teams. So we’ve got a lot of work to do.”
One area that the Bengals have got to start getting better in is that of the running game, which averaged 2.5 yards per carry against the Jags. Cedric Benson was held to a season-low 53 yards on 24 carries. Lewis’ assessment of the running game was that it was a total breakdown — line, running backs and receivers.
Benson is second in the league in carries with 101, but his average of 4.0 yards per carry is the lowest among the top 10 running backs in the AFC. Bernard Scott got some more playing time, but the Bengals continue to struggle with getting a consistent rotation for their top two backs.
It appears as if Benson should be set to go in this week’s game. He will have a hearing with the National Labor Relations Board in Cincinnati on his unfair labor practice charge against the NFL Players Association. Benson’s side wants that settled first before commissioner Roger Goodell can rule on his appeal of a three-game suspension for a violation of the league’s personal-conduct policy.