Cincinnati Bengals Bye Week Early Season in Review
Sep 21, 2014; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis heads off the field after the game against the Tennessee Titans at Paul Brown Stadium. The Bengals won 33-7. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
The Cincinnati Bengals have an early bye week unlike last season. Last season it was rest to make a run at a division championship, which was theirs to lose. This season, the bye week comes in Week 4, but it feels like the Bengals have accomplished so much, so let’s review what they have done the first 3 weeks.
Bengals 23 – Ravens 16
A tough Divisional game and on the road at M&T Stadium. A place where the Andy Dalton had lost his previous 3 trips and had been the road block to the start of the season last year and this year. Unlike last year though, the Bengals answered the challenge with 5 Mike Nugent field goals to take a 15-0 lead into half. The Ravens answered in the second half with the absence of Bengals top LB Vontaze Burfict scoring 16 consecutive points to take a 16-15 leads. That ended when Andy Dalton and AJ Green answered with a long 77 yard TD pass with just under 5 minutes remaining and a 2pt conversion by Mohammed Sanu that sealed the 7 point victory.
Atlanta 10 – Bengals 24
The Bengals were supposed to be tested by an improved Atlanta Falcons team at Paul Brown Stadium and it was just the contrary. Atlanta came out and matched an early Cincinnati field goal, but the Paul Guenther strategy of bend but not break took effect. The Bengals shut down this mediocre road team scoring 3 straight touchdowns and only giving up a late touchdown again without pro bowl linebacker Vontaze Burfict, who suffered his second concussion in just as many weeks.
Tennessee 7 – Bengals 33
The Bengals took this game as serious as the first two against a team they could have easily overlooked. It paid off in dominating fashion. The Bengals did not allow a sack in their third straight game and Andy Dalton was intercepted on a tipped ball, not due to inaccuracy. The Defense again played bend but not break football allowing over 300 yards but 2 interceptions and long fields caused by Kevin Huber punting 3 of 4 inside the 10 yard line made much of the difference. A well-deserved win by this team as a whole.
The Bengals have earned every win so far. None of them came cheap and the bye week will allow for key players to get a little healthier going into New England in week 5. The Bengals will look to not only even New England’s record but shut down the Patriots 2 years in a row. Something they have not done since 1991 and 1992 season, when both games where in Cincinnati. The Bengals haven’t won in New England since 1986.