RB Giovani Bernard - Cincinnati Bengals
|5-9, 202||Born: 11-22-1991||College: North Carolina||Drafted: Round 2, pick 2013|
News you need to know
From the upgrade/downgrade report (Mon Dec 2): Bernard will have value if Joe Mixon goes down before the end of the season
Week 14: at Cleveland Browns
FBG says: Neutral matchup. For as bad as the Bengals have been this season, they have remained consistent in giving volume to Joe Mixon. On the year, Mixon has seen an average of 15 carries per game, and over his last five games has seen an average of 20 carries per game. With the increased volume, Mixon has been slightly more productive and part of that has been changes on the offensive line as Billy Price replaced Michael Jordan, and Cordy Glenn returned. Unfortunately for the Bengals, Price suffered a back injury last week which will keep him out which will once again put rookie Michael Jordan at left guard who has been one of the worst offensive guards in football this season. Over the last four games, the Browns have significantly improved their rush defense as they have not allowed a running back to rush for over 63 yards and are allowing just 62 yards per game with 3.6 yards-per-carry. This is a defense that before these last four games had allowed 113 yards per game and 4.9 yards-per-carry. So is this defense improving? The short answer is yes, but they have also faced a favorable recent schedule in Pittsburgh twice, Buffalo, and Miami. Even still, just to stop anyone after their early-season struggles is a step in the right direction as Sione Takitaki has been playing more as the Browns have started to move away from a nickel defense and more towards a traditional 4-3. While the Bills game was the one impressive performance, it remains to be seen how the Browns will perform moving forward and we likely won't know after this week either as they are facing the Bengals who have the fourth-fewest rushing yards per game this year.
Recent Stats and Projections
Weekly Performance vs RB 1, RB 12, RB 24, RB 36
Giovani Bernard's percentile rank in each category, among RB with more than 50 fantasy points.
Recent Game Summaries
2019 Week 12 vs PIT (1 / -1 / 0 rush, 3 / 3 / 31 / 0 rec)
Bernard caught a short dump off on 3rd-and-16. He was able to make it interesting, weaving through traffic, getting to the sideline, and diving towards the sticks but he came up a couple yards short on the 14-yard gain. The Bengals tried to set up a screen for Bernard but he was held up while trying to slip out. He had another short catch on 3rd-and-long and this time got nowhere near picking up the first down as a pair of defenders closed quickly.
2019 Week 11 vs OAK (3 / 30 / 0 rush, 3 / 1 / 16 / 0 rec)
Bernard played 52% of the offensive snaps, his highest total in a month, and played more than a handful of snaps on the field together with Mixon. Bernard showed impressive vision and patience on a draw up the middle. He stutter-stepped, allowing time for a small hole to open up and darted through for a 10-yard pickup down to the Raiders 8-yard line. Bernard showed tremendous burst to get to the edge and turn it up the sideline for an 18-yard pickup.
2019 Week 10 vs BAL (4 / 8 / 0 rush, 1 / 1 / 0 / 0 rec)
Bernard played a season-low 24% of the snaps despite a game script that should have led to heavy usage with the Bengals playing from behind. He was out-touched by Joe Mixon 32-5. Bernard fumbled on his only reception. He lined up in the slot and caught the ball short on a crossing route but had it punched out trying to get to the outside.
2019 Week 8 vs LAR (3 / 31 / 0 rush, 2 / 2 / 14 / 0 rec)
Bernard handled the majority of the snaps in the second half and played 41% overall for the game. However, he is not racking up the big receiving numbers in these games the Bengals are trailing like he did in past seasons because he is usually being tasked with staying in and blocking. This was especially true against the Rams as the Bengals were rightfully worried about Aaron Donald and Michael Brockers bringing interior pressure. Bernard had just two touches in the fourth quarter. He did flash in limited opportunities, however. He spelled Mixon for a single play in the Bengals lone touchdown drive and ripped off a 25-yard run, bouncing off of multiple tackle attempts to get the Bengals into the red zone.
2019 Week 7 vs JAX (4 / 0 / 0 rush, 3 / 2 / 4 / 0 rec)
Mixon had a rough day and it wasn't any better for Bernard, who played 47% of the snaps. Bernard carried four times for zero yards and managed just four yards on three targets. Bernard was targeted on a screen pass in the fourth quarter but the defensive lineman read it well, held up Bernard and then intercepted the pass. He said after the game that whenever Bernard was in, he keyed on the pass and was able to guess what the play would be on the interception.
2019 Week 6 vs BAL (4 / 4 / 0 rush, 3 / 2 / 20 / 0 rec)
Bernard led the Bengals backfield with 33 snaps (53%). Like Mixon, he was a non-factor as a runner. Despite seeing the field a lot, Bernard wasn't targeted very many times. He mostly acted as an extra pass blocker to help make up for the offensive line being outmatched. He did setup the lone offensive touchdown of the day on a 14-yard reception. He caught the dump off along the right sideline and raced toward the end zone. He tried to tightrope the sideline and dove for the pylon but his foot was just barely on the stripe at the five yard line. Bernard was in the game for the two-minute drill before halftime and had a carry on 1st-and-goal from the six that went for just two yards.
2019 Week 5 vs ARI (2 / 10 / 0 rush, 3 / 3 / 16 / 0 rec)
As has been the case in recent weeks, Bernard didn't get a single touch in the first half. Three of his five touches came in the final four minutes when the Bengals went to a hurry-up offense. He slipped through a small hole and carried a defender the final few yards on a nine-yard run, his best of the day.
2019 Week 4 vs PIT (1 / 3 / 0 rush, 6 / 4 / 16 / 0 rec)
Even though the game script should have favored Bernard, he played a season-low 33% of the snaps. His only touch in the first three quarters came on the meaningless final play of the half. He took a screen pass for 12 yards but the Bengals were backed up deep and just let the clock run out. The rest of Bernard's touches came in garbage time and were equally meaningless. He took a 3rd-and-19 screen pass for a modest nine yard gain on his other positive play.
2019 Week 3 vs BUF (3 / 5 / 0 rush, 2 / 2 / 7 / 0 rec)
Bernard had just one touch in the first three quarters, a 3-yard run on a 2nd-and-14 draw play. Bernard played 43% of the snaps but touched it just five times for a total of 11 yards. He is not a big enough part of the offense to have much fantasy relevance.
2019 Week 2 vs SF (6 / 6 / 0 rush, 3 / 1 / 7 / 0 rec)
Bernard played 28 snaps but many of them came in garbage time. Three of his seven touches came late in the fourth quarter when the Bengals were trailing by 31 points. He did get a full drive to himself midway through the second quarter, carrying three times for eight yards on the field goal drive. Bernard managed just 13 yards on the day despite a game script that was just about perfect for him. In this offense, he doesn't have much fantasy value while Mixon is healthy.
2019 Week 1 vs SEA (7 / 21 / 0 rush, 3 / 2 / 42 / 0 rec)
Prior to Joe Mixon getting hurt in the second half, Bernard did not touch the ball at all. Once Mixon was sidelined, Bernard became heavily involved. His first drive of the game, he touched the ball on four straight plays. In all, he garnered nine touches in the second half. Bernard's production was feast or famine on the day. He took a screen for a 35-yard gain. It looked like he might be tripped up for no gain but was able to scoot away from a chasing defensive lineman and sneak through some traffic down the sideline for the long completion. He also bounced off a tackle attempt to gain 11 yards on a running play off of left tackle. Bernard also was dropped for a loss or no gain three times, including a 4th-and-1 play where he wasn't able to keep his feet after first contact and was dropped short of the first down by an arm tackle. Bernard was also stacked up for no gain for a fourth time down near the goal line but Seattle elected to accept the holding penalty. It was an okay day for Bernard. His playmaking ability was on display but so too were his limitations in the every down role.
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|14||@ Cleveland Browns|
|15||vs New England Patriots|
|16||@ Miami Dolphins|
|17||vs Cleveland Browns|