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#1 von elaine95 , 17.01.2020 02:42

CLEVELAND (AP)An in-state NFL rivalry pitting distant neighbor against neighbor has lost its bite. Cincinnati vs. Cleveland is more of a professional pillow fight these days. The battle of 0-hio. Lumped together at the bottom of the AFC North’s standings [url=http://www.thebengalslockerroom.com/authentic-joe-mixon-jersey]Joe Mixon Jersey White[/url] , the Bengals (0-3) and Browns (0-3) both enter Sunday’s matchup winless and desperate to salvage seasons that are quickly slipping away. They haven’t both been without a win after three games since their matchup in 2008, when Cleveland rolled into Paul Brown Stadium and pulled out a 20-12 victory. After losing their first 14 games last season, the Browns are falling back on old habits. They start slowly, make too many mistakes (dropped passes and penalties top the list), mount a comeback and lose. Week after week. The league’s youngest team is again taking its lumps. ”We are becoming more experienced as an offense, and every individual is becoming more experienced every time we step on that field,” said rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer, who has been sacked 10 times and thrown seven interceptions. ”We are learning. We are getting better. We definitely feel that progress here, and that mentality is what drives us at practice to get better.” While the Browns suffer through growing pains, the Bengals are hurting nearly as badly. Following consecutive home losses to start the season, they built a 21-7 lead last week at Green Bay only to have Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers work some typical Lambeau Field magic and pull out a 27-24 overtime win. Cincinnati’s offense finally shook off some rust under new offensive coordinator Bill Lazor, who took over after Ken Zampese was fired just two games into the season. Anyone, really, could see the Bengals weren’t getting the ball enough to two of their top playmakers: wide receiver A.J. Green and running back Joe Mixon. That changed against the Packers as Green had 10 catches, equaling his total in the first two games and Mixon had 18 carries, one more than in his first two. ”It was a step in the right direction,” Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton said. ”We didn’t get shut out. We did score a couple of touchdowns, so we have that going for us. At the end of the day [url=http://www.thebengalslockerroom.com/authentic-darqueze-dennard-jersey]Womens Darqueze Dennard Jersey[/url] , winning is all that matters.” And, at the end of Sunday, one of Ohio’s teams may finally do just that. GARRETT GOES: The Browns could get a huge lift if rookie defensive end Myles Garrett, the No. 1 overall pick, makes his regular-season debut. He missed Cleveland’s first three games with a sprained right ankle, but the speedy rusher returned to practice this week and all signs are pointing to him playing – at least a little. The team is taking a conservative approach with their prized prodigy and don’t want to rush Garrett, who was so impressive during the preseason. ”I hope he can have some meaningful snaps out there because we know what he can do and the difference he makes for this team when he is out there and is able to rush the passer,” All-Pro tackle Joe Thomas said. BURFICT BACK: Bengals bad-boy linebacker Vontaze Burfict is back. He’ll return Sunday after serving his latest three-game suspension for an illegal hit. Burfict also missed Cincinnati’s first three games last season, and quickly made up for lost time when he returned, played 76 percent of the snaps in his first game back, a 22-7 win over the Dolphins. In 2015, he missed the first six games while recovering from a knee injury. In his return in Pittsburgh, he played 48 percent of the snaps and had five tackles, including one on Le’Veon Bell that resulted in the running back tearing up his right knee. ”He’s kind of the straw that stirs the drink there,” Browns coach Hue Jackson said. OLD FRIENDS:Browns right guard Kevin Zeitler will get his first view from the opposite side of ”The Battle of Ohio.” He spent five seasons with Cincinnati before signing a five-year, $60 million free agent contract with Cleveland in March. The Bengals made no formal attempt to re-sign the former first-round draft pick. ”I have no hard feelings about that,” he said. ”It is a business. They have a lot of talented players on that team that they need to take care of in the upcoming years. It is what it is.” DEEP BALL: The Bengals haven’t hit many big plays, with Dalton repeatedly missing Green on deep throws. They haven’t thrown many deep passes overall [url=http://www.thebengalslockerroom.com/authentic-cordy-glenn-jersey]Womens Cordy Glenn Jersey[/url] , and the lack of a big play has been one of the offensive issues on offense. ”That’s part of what we’re trying to do now,” Dalton said. ”We’ve got to find a way to get more chunk plays and get the ball down the field.” — AP Sports Writer Joe Kay in Cincinnati contributed to this report. — Ryan Tannehill tried to give his receiver a little more time to get open, but Geno Atkins was having none of it.The Bengals tackle closed quickly and smacked into the Dolphins quarterback as he released an incomplete pass to Kenny Stills.Just the start of a long day for Miami's overmatched blockers.Atkins had two more sacks and three quarterback hits during Cincinnati's 27-17 win on Sunday that was the direct result of the Bengals' defense. Tannehill was sacked twice in the fourth quarter and had three turnovers, including an interception and fumble that were returned for the decisive touchdowns.Atkins was in the middle of it, forcing Tannehill to stray from the pocket and become vulnerable to hits that led to the turnovers."He's unbelievable," first-year defensive coordinator Teryl Austin said. "On one sack he beat the guy so fast I don't know what you ask the quarterback to do. He just does stuff you don't teach."Atkins has six sacks in five games, tied with the Texans' J.J. Watt and the Steelers' T.J. Watt for the league lead. No other interior NFL lineman has more than three sacks. The Bengals (4-1) host the Steelers (2-2-1) on Sunday in an important game for the AFC North.A victory would end Cincinnati's run of six straight losses to the Steelers and provide a cushion — the Bengals have already beaten the Ravens (3-2) at Paul Brown Stadium. A seventh straight loss to Pittsburgh would leave the race wide open.Atkins has made the biggest impact on a defense that leads the league with three returns for touchdowns. He's off to one of his best starts after getting a four-year contract extension through 2022. His best season was 2012, when he had 12陆 sacks and forced four fumbles.His 67 sacks rank third in franchise history and are the most by a Bengals interior lineman. Atkins has led NFL interior linemen in sacks three times and tied for the lead twice. His push from the middle of the line forces quarterbacks to throw early or scramble out of the pocket, making plays break down."Geno had quite a few collisions with the quarterback (on Sunday)," coach Marvin Lewis said. "He knocks him down, and he stays on his feet. That's a good way to do it, I guess. He can do it with that kind of velocity."Atkins is a leading example of how shorter defensive linemen can get through and around much bigger blockers. The 6-foot-1, 300-pound tackle can use his signature "bull rush" move on linemen who aren't set for it, driving them backward into the quarterback.Atkins is one of the quietest Bengals, declining interviews and saying little during team meetings. After he signed his contract extension, Atkins said during a rare media session that he realized early in his nine-year career that his size can be a big advantage in the NFL."Short, stocky, strong guys — we have the leverage [url=http://www.thebengalslockerroom.com/authentic-malik-jefferson-jersey]http://www.thebengalslockerroom.com/authentic-malik-jefferson-jersey[/url] , strength and power," Atkins said. "The bull rush is really my will against your will."Austin came to the Bengals from Detroit, where Ndamukong Suh created problems for blockers in much the same way. He appreciates how Atkins can force offenses to change their blocking plans."He just can wreck the game," Austin said. "It's like when I had Suh in '14. You can't single-block the guy. And if you do, you do at your own risk. He is tenacious. He's got different moves. He's strong. He's quick. Boy, he's fun to watch."The only thing he doesn't do is talk very much. Concluding his media session after the contract extension, he said he would slip back into his customary silence."I'm not that interesting to talk to," he said.MORE PRIME TIME: The Bengals' game at Kansas City on Sunday, Oct. 21 was moved to prime time, giving Cincinnati a pair of night games this season. The Bengals beat the Ravens 34-23 on Thursday, Sept. 13. The Chiefs now have six night games this season. The Bengals are 6-14 in prime time since 2011, including 0-5 on Sunday, 2-5 on Monday, 4-3 on Thursday and 0-1 on Saturday night.ROSTER MOVE: The Bengals waived running back Thomas Rawls, a fourth-year player who signed as a free agent on Sept. 19 after Joe Mixon suffered a knee injury. Mixon returned on Sunday.


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