Cincinnati cornerback Terence Newman joined a chorus of Bengals players expressing frustration with the team's under-performance in recent weeks, Geoff Hobson writes this morning on Cincinnati's website.
Including Sunday's game, Cincinnati has suffered two losses and a tie since starting out 3-0.
In two of the last three weeks, Cincinnati has allowed more than 500 yards, and in three games has given up a combined total of 107 points. According to Hobson, that's the most they've allowed since 2010.
In the past three weeks, the Bengals defense has been on the field for 239 snaps, including 80 two weeks ago in a five-quarter tie at home against the Carolina Panthers.
Newman, in his 12th NFL season and third in Cincinnati, also offered encouragement to his teammates.
"The biggest thing is we have to keep believing in each other," said Newman. "This is something this team has been doing since before I got here. It's something that shouldn't change. I think we just have to believe in each other. Believe in the system...Just go out and execute."
Sunday's loss was also the fifth time this season the defense has played partly without Vontaze Burfict, whose conduct has hindered the team throughout the season. He left in the first half with a cervical sprain.
Defensive lineman Robert Geathers, an 11-year veteran, also called on his teammates to look ahead.
"We've got the guys to dig ourselves out of this hole. We're playing Baltimore next week. We get ahead in our division. Take it from there, one game at a time," Geathers said.
The Bengals, currently 3-2-1 and second in the AFC North, host the division rival Ravens in Paul Brown Stadium next week. Baltimore is 5-2 and leads the division.
- Christopher Woody