Oct 11, 2015; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals running back Giovani Bernard (25) runs the ball against the Seattle Seahawks in the first half at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports
Wow. Just wow.
I was prepared to write an article called “Seahawks handle Bengals,” but the Bengals absolutely went off and righted the ship, scoring 20 unanswered points in the fourth quarter and overtime to stun the Seahawks in an overtime victory at Paul Brown Stadium.
The “Dalton is garbage, mediocre, whatever you want to call him” narrative is over. It just is. Andy Dalton showed tremendous poise throughout the game, keeping calm despite several plays in which his offensive line crumbled and the Seahawks defense made plays. Dalton was even confident enough to target A.J. Green (who was covered by Richard Sherman) on the final drive of the fourth quarter; Green, of course, made the catch on a crucial play that continued Cincinnati’s drive down the field. Andy Dalton is a Top-10 Quarterback.
Oct 11, 2015; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert (85) reacts after scoring a touchdown against the Seattle Seahawks in the first quarter at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports
Tyler Eifert is going to be a Pro-Bowler. It’s as simple as that; he’s easily a top five tight end in the NFL and is an incredible mismatch on offense for Cincinnati. The matchup nightmare hauled in eight passes for 90 yards and two touchdowns, making Kam Chancellor look like a league-average safety.
The most impressive aspect of this game, however, was the defense’s response to going down. Any other Bengals team in recent memory would’ve folded like paper after going down 17 points, but Cincinnati’s defense held its ground, containing Russell Wilson and shutting out his Seahawks in the fourth quarter. Carlos Dunlap and Geno Atkins combined for 2.5 sacks, Adam Jones made a key interception and the unit as a whole never seemed to give up, like previous Cincinnati defenses had a tendency to do.
Up next for Cincinnati will be yet another afternoon matchup–this time, in Buffalo–as the 5-0 Bengals will take on the 3-2 Bills.