Bengals’ quarterback Andy Dalton shined in the NFL’s annual Pro Bowl last Sunday. In the first All-star game ever played in Orlando, Florida, Dalton broke a 7-7 tie with a pair of scoring drives to give the AFC a lead they would hold onto for the remainder of the contest.
After throwing his first career Pro-Bowl interception, Dalton hit T.Y. Hilton, the NFL’s leading receiver, for a key 16-yard gain on third and long. Two plays later, the Red Rifle’s 23-yard touchdown to former Cincinnati Bearcat Travis Kelce gave the AFC a 14-7 lead.
Dalton’s final drive of the game gave the AFC the game’s biggest lead. He hit all four of his attempts for 53 yards (including another third and long conversion, this time to Denver’s Demaryius Thomas) to setup Justin Tucker‘s 38-yard field goal to make it 17-7.
Dalton finished with a team-high 10 completions for 100 yards and was the only one of the six quarterbacks in the game to lead multiple scoring drives.
Defensively, Carlos Dunlap did not make it onto the final box score. But he was in on a goal-line stand by the AFC defense on the first drive of the game that stopped Cowboys‘ running back Ezekiel Elliot inches away from the end zone.
Dunalp’s defensive teammate, Geno Atkins, made his case for MVP honors late in the fourth quarter. He tallied a sack of Washington’s Kirk Cousins and another with Von Miller on the NFC’s next possession. Both promising drives were stopped to a screeching halt, resulting in a pair of Matt Prater field goals to make it 20-13.
It was business as usual for three-time Pro-Bowler Andrew Whitworth. The veteran lineman played right tackle and split time with Tennessee’s Taylor Lewan for the majority of the game.
Each member of the AFC’s winning roster received a $61,000 bonus.
Feature photo: Zimbio.com