CINCINNATI, OH– For the first time since October 23rd, the Cincinnati Bengals (4-7-1) were victorious after a triumphant 32-14 win over the visiting Philadelphia Eagles (5-7).
Andy Dalton completed passes to nine different receivers, throwing for 332 yards and a pair of touchdowns. The Bengals are now 3-1 this season when Dalton eclipses the 300-yard mark.
Nursing a 13-0 lead late in the first half, Dalton led a 12-play, 93-yard drive, capped off with a Tyler Eifert‘s diving 13-yard touchdown with seven seconds left in the half.
Eifert’s third score his last five games was followed by yet another extra-point miss by Mike Nugent, his fifth in as many games. The veteran placekicker did convert on all four of his field goal attempts, though, accounting for 14 total points.
The Bengals scored on their first six possessions of the game, keeping the pedal down in the second half. Brandon LaFell capped off Cincinnati’s 77-yard opening march of the second half with an eight-yard scoring snag, his first touchdown since the last Bengals’ victory in late October. LaFell finished with 95 yards. The Bengals have not had a 100-yard wide receiver (not named A.J. Green) since Mohamed Sanu on October 26, 2014 against the Baltimore Ravens.
It was another strong game for Paul Guenther and his defensive unit. The Bengals forced three interceptions of rookie Carson Wentz, who attempted a season-high 60 passes. Vontaze Burfict was all over the field, tallying a team-best 15 tackles to go with a pair of interceptions. His second pick — at the Cincinnati 30-yard line with four minutes to go — sealed a fourth win for the Bengals.
His 54-yard return on his second pick set up a fourth Nugent field goal and was the longest interception return by a Bengal since Adam Jones in 2013.
Jeremy Hill gave the Bengals a 10-0 lead in the first quarter with a four-yard touchdown run, but only managed 33 yards on 23 attempts in the game. The LSU-product’s 1.4 yards per carry was his lowest average per attempt since a 2014 loss to New England, a game where he only ran the ball twice.
For a second straight week, Rex Burkhead was the team’s leading rusher, gaining 38 yards on eight attempts. However, Burkhead did lose a fumble on the first play of the fourth quarter after one of his four receptions.
Wentz finished 36 of 60 for 308 yards (his third 300-yard game of the season), with one touchdown and three interceptions. It was his fourth multi-interception game of his rookie campaign and he’s now thrown six picks over the Eagles’ current three-game losing streak.
- The Bengals held the Eagles to just 53 total rushing yards
- Rookie Paul Turner was Philadelphia’s leading receiver, catching six of eight targets for 80 yards
- Bengals’ rookie wide out Cody Core‘s first catch was a 50-yard reception — the longest by a Bengals’ receiver since week four — that set up Hill’s four-yard scoring plunge in the first quarter.
- Offensive tackle Jake Fisher caught a pass for a first down in the fourth quarter; his second career reception. However, the second-year lineman fumbled near the sidelines, giving possession back to Philadelphia with 6:14 left in the game.
- Five turnovers between both teams
- Dalton season-high 130.0 passer rating. Seventh time in the last two years he’s averaged over 10 yards per completion
- Darren Sproles‘ first rushing touchdown since week 17 of last season made it 29-14 with 6:53 left in the game.
- Shawn Williams recorded his fourth career interception
- Bengals have allowed just 69 points in the last four contests (17.2 points per game)
- Cincinnati didn’t allow a sack of Andy Dalton for the first time since last year’s 31-7 win over the Rams.
- Eagles haven’t beat the Bengals since December 24, 2000.
The Bengals still need a lot of help to somehow capture another AFC North crown. They travel to Cleveland next Sunday (12/11) to face the winless Browns (0-12) in the second edition of the Battle of Ohio.
Photo: USA Today