The Bengals don't just have a 'good' defense.
They have a 'total' defense, according to the Houston Texans.
Perfect through the first half of 2015, Cincinnati boasts a defensive unit that allows just 17.8 points per game. That's the fourth-best mark in the entire League.
"They're 8-0 for a reason," Bill O'Brien said on Monday. "That's a heck of an opponent on the other side."
Cincinnati's recorded 12 takeaways this season. O'Brien explained the strengths on that side of the ball, which starts up front with players like Carlos Dunlap, Michael Johnson and Geno Atkins
"One of the reasons why is their front is a very strong front," O'Brien said. "Linebackers are athletic, tough, their top four corners are all first-round draft picks, talented guys, got a lot of respect for this defense and our guys are obviously going to have to be up to that challenge."
While O'Brien was expansive in his explanation of why Cincinnati's D has excelled, receiver DeAndre Hopkins kept it simple.
"They're undefeated, so they're doing something right," Hopkins said.
In his eight-year career, left tackle Duane Brown has squared off against Cincinnati four times in the regular season and twice in the playoffs. The Pro Bowler was quick to point out this edition of the Bengals is one of the tougher defenses the Texans will have faced in 2015.
"We've had some pretty tough ones," Brown said. "I think as a total defense this is definitely up there. They have some great players, they're pretty deep as well."
In those six games since 2008, Brown and the Texans were victorious five times. The lone defeat came at home last year during Week 12.
"They're good in the run, good in the pass rush, they've got some good 'backers, nice secondary," Brown said. "This will be a big test for us. I think it's on us as an offensive line to win the battle up front in order for us to be successful, so we're putting the time in this week."
Brown and the Texans are off on Tuesday, and will resume practice on Wednesday at the Houston Methodist Training Center.
The Houston Texans roster in photos. (Updated 7/29/2021)