Bengals beat writer Paul Dehner on the projected split between RBs Jeremy Hill and Giovani Bernard:
In my opinion, this Sunday you will see about at 65-35 split between the two, with Hill receiving the majority. As far as being a starter goes, I asked Hue specifically about that this week and he offered the "whoever goes out there first doesn't matter." He's right in that regard. He's acknowledged Hill deserves more work and that's the far more important point then who trots out there first.
The question for me will not be how the breakdown ends up, but the method in getting there. Will they alternate series? Will Bernard be the third-down back? Those are the questions we won't have answered until we see Sunday.
Dehner doesn't specify if he's predicting carries or touches, but we would guess he's talking about the former. The Bengals RBs are getting 24.2 carries per game this season, so if only Hill and Bernard tote the ball, a 65/35 split would represent 15.7 carries for Hill and 8.5 carries for Bernard. Hill caught 13 passes in the seven games in which Bernard also played, so that is a projected workload of around 17-18 touches for Hill. In his recent stint as the starter, he has seen 22.0 touches per game. Due to the report that Bernard got the first reps with the starts in practice on Thursday, we currently have it as more of a 55/45 split between the two players, with Hill in a "lead" role. We feel that Hill is usable as a RB2, though his workload isn't as stable as it has been in the last few weeks. As for Bernard, he's shaping up as more of a RB3/flex. Common sense tells us that he will be limited in his first game back, but common sense doesn't always prevail in the NFL.