10 shining stars in Cincinnati Bengals’ monumental Wild Card win

Leigh Oleszczak
Evan McPherson, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Evan McPherson, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /
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Cincinnati Bengals
Jessie Bates, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

5.  Jessie Bates

What a time to show up and prove you’re worthy of a contract extension, eh, Jessie Bates?

This wasn’t the kind of season fans were hoping for from Bates, as he didn’t look like his normal self but he sure as heck looked like the 2020 version of himself in this game. Bates finished with six tackles and three crucial defended passes, one of which helped keep the Raiders out of the end zone on that final drive.

4. Trey Hendrickson

As soon as Trey Hendrickson went down with an injury, the pass rush was non-existent, proving how important he is to this defense. During his time in the game, Hendrickson had a key sack that led to a fumble recovery by the good guys.

Hopefully, Hendrickson is able to return in time for the Divisional Round because this defense isn’t the same without him.

3. Evan McPherson

The Bengals scored 26 points on Saturday. Evan McPherson was responsible for 14 of those points, as he converted all four field goals and both extra-point attempts. With any of the other kickers this team has had in the past, missing one of those attempts was entirely on the table.

McPherson honestly could have been MVP of this game because, without him, the Bengals might not win the game.