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Old 07-17-2008, 09:00 AM    (permalink
BengalMedic
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Default Lets talk running backs...

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/column...ohn&id=3491802

This is from Clayton on ESPN the other day and the part I want to address the most is here:

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Q: Do you think Bengals RB Rudi Johnson has enough left in the tank to regain the form he had when he rushed for more than 1,400 yards?

Rashad, Cincinnati

Seeing Johnson in minicamp was a revelation. He has worked out so hard this offseason -- he's a ball of muscles. It was amazing how quickly he was hitting the holes. He has the ability to get to the 1,400-yard level, but I'm not sure he will have enough carries for that number. The days of the 350-carry back are over, and the Bengals will try to get Chris Perry involved a little. From what I see, though, Johnson has a chance to have a Pro Bowl season. He looks awesome.
I for one LOVE hearing positive things about anything regarding our running game, as it was so pathetic last season. Seeing Rudi going back to his strength is a welcomed thing. Putting the weight back on by hitting the weights will be huge for us considering the schedule. Couple that with a healthy Perry (God help us) and we are looking at what we had in '05. I just really hope they concentrate on this part of the offense this season, WE WILL NEED IT !!!
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Old 07-17-2008, 11:53 AM    (permalink
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A healthy Perry is just absolutely massive. No one outside of Bengals fans can see what a huge impact he has. We've missed it the past 2 seasons. In so many ways he makes our offense better. Change of pace to Rudi's style in a massive way, reciever out of the backfield (kinda filled the void of a TE when he was healthy), big play threat, gives Rudi a break but of course this only matters if he's healthy.

We cannot make the playoffs if our running game does not improve... Plain and simple. It's as important for it to improve as it is for our defense to improve.
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Old 07-17-2008, 12:25 PM    (permalink
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Couldn't agree more with the need for improvement in the running aspect of our offense. It made me sick last year when people started throwing around how Watson was going to become the starter for the Bengals the following year. He did well against teams he was suppose to well against, but not much more. Wow, a big game against the Jets ?? He must be going to the pro bowl huh ?? (sarcasm off)

Anyway, I like the depth Watson provides and I love having both Irons and Dorsey sitting there as well. Don't get me wrong, the running game could go in the crapper with additional injuries, but heck, so can any position...
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Old 07-17-2008, 07:58 PM    (permalink
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Watson is consistent and durable, but he's not starting material.

Rudi has plenty left in the tank, its just a 1 year with a hamstring injury - people need to stop acting like he's done.

Perry is a play maker, its as simple as that. He brings the ability to both run and catch out of the backfield (which is super important for Carson - if you have 3 receivers, 1 TE and a RB all trying to get open, its almost guaranteed to happen and Carson will find the guy who gets open). Obviously he has concerns with staying healthy, but if he manages to stay healthy he adds a lot to our offense.

Dorsey is a play maker too - I think his Special teams plays and occasional runs could throw defenses off guard. I think he's on the PuP list, but as long as we can keep his contract small, I'd keep him around for as long as he's willing to stay.

Irons hasn't proven anything yet, I wasn't ecstatic about the pick when it happened, but If he ends up being really good, then good for us. If he ends up being really bad; well we already have a pretty solid running game.


Anyways thats my thoughts on the RB's. I think if Rudi and Perry stay healthy through all of 08', we will be a play off team.
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Old 07-18-2008, 01:31 AM    (permalink
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Watson could be a decent starter but that is all you can expect from him. A healthy and in shape Rudi is a very good thing because the man is basically guaranteed 1300+ yds and 10 TDs. The biggest factor in our running game(from a back standpoint at least) is Chris Perry. IF he is healthy(n its a BIG if) he single handedly makes our running game more effective as he is pretty much the perfect complement to Rudi.

A healthy Kenny Irons would also be a revelation IMO and if we can actually keep Dorsey around we would have an AMAZING running attack(with full health) that would be better overall than '05 by a long shot. It would be hard for any defense to defend that kind of mix.
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Old 07-20-2008, 10:54 PM    (permalink
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I wonder what the chances of Watson getting cut are. He's decent enough as a backup and is a good guy in the locker room but there comes a time when you have to cut ties (i.e. Brian Simmons).

If/when Irons hits PUP I think that helps to delay the decision.
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Old 07-21-2008, 09:00 AM    (permalink
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Well, if the Bengals decide to keep 4 running backs who stays and who goes ??

You have to figure Rudi and Perry are locks. You also have a FB in either J. Johnson or the Coats project, if they really aren't happy with Johnson's weight. That's 3. You have Irons and maybe Dorsey going to the PUP and Watson. Irons isn't going anywhere when he returns, so what do you do with Dorsey and Watson ??

The running back competition in camp is going to be FIERCE !!!
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Old 07-24-2008, 10:10 PM    (permalink
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If they end up cutting Watson or Dorsey because they still think Rudi is the answer, I think it is a mistake. I think Rudi will be OK, but his best days are in the rear view mirror while Dorey and Watson can still rpovide fine play and Dorsey is electric when given the chance. They almost need an injury to solve this problem
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Old 07-24-2008, 10:12 PM    (permalink
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I also think that while Coats is hungry to become a FB, Jeremi is a quality blocker and is always fat this time of year. I expect he'll get his weight down and he will be our FB.
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Old 07-25-2008, 02:25 AM    (permalink
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickscott View Post
If they end up cutting Watson or Dorsey because they still think Rudi is the answer, I think it is a mistake. I think Rudi will be OK, but his best days are in the rear view mirror while Dorey and Watson can still rpovide fine play and Dorsey is electric when given the chance. They almost need an injury to solve this problem
Watson and Dorsey arent the answer either. Watson isnt a feature back and Dorsey wont amount either. IMO Perry or Irons will be the answer. Also I think Rudi will come out on all cylinders this year...but he doesnt have many years left.
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Old 07-25-2008, 04:06 AM    (permalink
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I am encouraged by the reports on Rudi and I am not one to put 1300-1400 and 10 TD's behind him just like that. He can still produce and we need him until Irons can carry the load. Perry is just an added bonus at this point.
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Old 07-25-2008, 07:04 AM    (permalink
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This is a love hate situation for me. I'll look at it one way and LOVE the fact we have a heavier, healthy Rudi, a healthy Perry, and an exciting youngster in Dorsey with Irons healing. Watson has proved reliable and there's that.

Then I look at it another way and HATE the fact that we have no idea if Rudi is going to bounce back or if he's done. Perry has been an injury waiting to happen. Irons is broke and won't be back. Dorsey is dinged and Watson is nothing more than depth and is not starter quality.

Being the optimistic person I am, I will stick with the "love" portion of my response, but being the realistic person I also am, know that the "hate" portion may be the case...
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