This Team is not the Same Old Cincinnati Bengals
In today’s game against the Colts, the Bengals made plays that Bengal teams of old wouldn’t have made. This team has clearly turned a page.
We have all seen it too many times before. The Bengals have a chance to put a game away but fail to do so. We then watch helplessly as the opposing team drives down field at the end of the game to win it.
It’s okay to admit that is what was going through all Bengal fans’ minds today after the Bengals dropped two potential interceptions – first by Carlos Dunlap and then by Dre Kirkpatrick.
However, as we seen all offseason with the Bengals, there’s something different about this team. It’s been discussed how the Bengals did many things in the off season that usually we never seen the front office do. Now we are also seeing it on the field.
This game started off as bad as it possibly could have. Andy Dalton got pressured on the second snap of the season and threw an interception. Instead of just watching defensive player run into the end zone, Andy Dalton went over and made a huge touchdown-saving tackle. The defense responded by intercepting Andrew Luck on his first pass and minimizing the damage.
Multiple times in this game the Colts did things to the Bengals that, in the past, would have signaled a loss was coming. However, each and every time the Bengals responded today and made a play.
AJ Green’s first fumble would ultimately lead to the Colts going down the field and getting a touchdown. Joe Mixon and the offense quickly responded with a drive that ended with John Ross’s first NFL career touchdown.
All day long, the team kept responding. It didn’t matter what happened or what penalty may have been called on them that may have been questionable. For example, the penalty on Carlos Dunlap for roughing the QB. Instead of letting that penalty get them down, the Bengals once again responded. Dunlap made up for the penalty by getting a sack. This led to a missed 55-yard field goal and good field position for the offense.
The Bengals took advantage of this field position and quickly went down for the go ahead touchdown on Joe Mixon’s dive into the end zone. This led to what I believe was the play of the game.
The Bengals, leading 24-23, with five minutes left were facing a 3rd and 8 on their own side of the 50. Andy Dalton quickly had pressure on him, but he stepped up, moved to the right, and found Tyler Boyd for a huge third down conversion. This led to the Bengals taking more time off the clock and getting a field goal. This meant that the Colts had to go for a touchdown on their last drive and not just a field goal.
After the Bengals dropped two game ending interceptions, the Colts marched down the field with short passes. This was looking like Andrew Luck was going to add to his fourth quarter comeback victory total. Once again the Bengals responded, and safety Clayton Fejedelem sealed the game with a hit to force a fumble by Jack Doyle. He then ultimately picked up and ran it back 83 yards for the game sealing touchdown.
As this team actually made the plays to win the game, they proved that something was different about this season. It’s only one game, but these are not your same old Bengals.