Cincinnati Bengals Serve Up Crow, Trounce New Orleans Saints


Nov 16, 2014; New Orleans, LA, USA; Cincinnati Bengals running back Jeremy Hill (32) runs in the second quarter of their game against the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

The 2014 Cincinnati Bengals are like a box of rotten chocolates: you never know what you’re going to get and they usually make you sick, but you can’t quite let go of the idea that there is something good at their core.  They did it again on Sunday, traveling to Louisiana to handle the New Orleans Saints, 27-10, just a little over a week after getting blown out at home by the Cleveland Browns.

In New Orleans, a Bengals offense that failed them early and often against Cleveland was in fine form, led by much-maligned quarterback Andy Dalton, who went 16-of-22 for 220 yards and three touchdowns against no interceptions and just one sack. Rookie running back Jeremy Hill, who lit up the Jacksonville Jaguars two weeks ago before forgetting to show up against the Browns, was back to the good this week.  Actually, he was back to the great, running for 152 yards on 27 carries for an average gain of 5.6 yards.

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For the first time in a long time, the Bengals receiving corps also looked kind of like it should have all year, with A.J. Green pulling in six catches for 127 yards and a TD.

As good as the Cincy offense looked, the defense might have been an even bigger deal, as they held the Saints to just 75 yards on the ground.  It was the first sub-100 yard effort against the Bengals since the Atlanta Falcons managed 97 in Week 2, and it was by far the stoutest effort by the run D all year.

With nothing happening on the ground, Saints quarterback Drew Brees was forced to air it out, and he connected on 33 of his 41 passes, but still managed just 255 yards and one touchdown.

The message from this game is, don’t sleep on these Bengals.  Or do.  Whatever you think of them, they’ll probably prove you wrong at some point, but they’ll probably prove you right at some point, too.

For the moment, though, they’re back in first place in the AFC North.

Funny game, this.