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Bengals Pregame Quick Hits: Trey Hendrickson Stalks NFL Sack Title: 'What I Want To Do Is Win The Game'; Robbins' Offseason Plan; Inactives

DE Trey Hendrickson and DE Sam Hubbard warm up before kickoff of the Browns-Bengals game on Sunday, January 7, 2024 at Paycor Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio.
DE Trey Hendrickson and DE Sam Hubbard warm up before kickoff of the Browns-Bengals game on Sunday, January 7, 2024 at Paycor Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Bengals three-time Pro Bowl sack ace Trey Hendrickson heads into Sunday's finale against the Browns at Paycor Stadium needing 2.5 sacks to edge the Steelers' T.J. Watt for the NFL sack title.

But after he was named to his third straight Pro Bowl last week, Hendrickson had only Jeff Driskel in his sights. Driskel, the starting quarterback who has been with the Browns all of a week, knows Hendrickson well. Hendrickson was college roommates with Driskel's brother at Florida Atlantic.

 "I'm not really concerned about who takes the title home," Hendrickson said. "Those are great for fans and guys that are looking at all the statistics. What I want to do is win the game. You have to affect the quarterback to win football games. I'm not looking at being the sack leader. I'm going to try and take down the quarterback for this team and this organization so we can end our season with a win."

Bengals slot cornerback Mike Hilton says the defense  hopes Hendrickson goes off and gets the NFL record. Coming in with 17, he would need six.

"His motor never stops," Hilton said. "I see him fight through double teams, triple teams, and finish off the quarterback. Trey is a different breed, now.

"He should be in the All-Pro conversation."

How many chances will Hendrickson get against back-up left tackles Geron Christian Sr., and Leroy Watson IV? The Browns are 11th in rushing and Driskel is an athletic draft pick of the Red Sox who can run. He has averaged 5.3 yards on 73 NFL carries and has played some pro wide receiver.

NEXT FOR ROBBINS: Bengals rookie punter Brad Robbins began his career against these Browns on Opening Day and it couldn't have been a tougher debut. Ten punts on a rain-slicked grass field for an average of 40.9 yards and he's been battling ever since. He's third from the bottom in gross punting at 40 yards per and he's 25th in net.  

He's got a plan for the offseason.

"What I'm going to be doing is matching hang time  and distance a little bit better," Robbins said last week. "I feel like once you get into the NFL, you hear about all these good returners. I think it's all about trusting the guys around you and getting the ball down field more.

"It took me three quarters of the year where I began to really feel comfortable and feel like I'm in the right spots. I feel like the biggest improvement in your career comes from year one to year two."

Robbins has consulted with veteran punters, such as the guy he replaced, Bengals all-time punter Kevin Huber, as well as three-time Pro Bowl punter A.J. Cole of the Raiders, Robbins met Cole when he was recruited by North Carolina State and they've stayed in touch.

SLANTS AND SCREENS: As expected after Friday's injury report, two starters, wide receiver Tee Higgins (hamstring) and cornerback Chidobe Awuzie (shoulder/calf) are inactive …

So is tight end Irv Smith, out for the second time in three weeks via a coach's decision …

Remaining inactives: Running back Chris Evans, offensive linemen Trey Hill and D'Ante Smith, and defensive tackle Travis Bell. Those four have played a combined eight games, all by Evans …

Other numbers: Wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase needs four catches to join T.J. Houshmandzadeh (112 in 2007) and Carl Pickens (100 in 1996) as Bengals with 100 catch seasons ...

Running back Joe Mixon needs 77 yards for his fourth 1,000-yard rushing season. Only Bengals all-time rusher Corey Dillon has more ...