Le’Veon Bell and Pittsburgh Steelers Run Away from Cincinnati Bengals in Fourth Quarter


Through three quarters of the 2014 season, the Pittsburgh Steelers had averaged nearly 27 points per game, which left them with the eighth-ranked offensive attack in the NFL.  On Sunday on at Paul Brown Stadium, though, the Steelers nearly matched that per-game output in the fourth quarter alone, en route to a 42-21 drubbing of the Cincinnati Bengals that once again leaves the Cincinnati’s playoff hopes in question. Chief among the Bengal killers today was running back Le’Veon Bell, who rushed for 185 yards and two fourth-quarter touchdowns, plus had six catches for 50 yards and another score.   

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The Benglas led 14-10 at the half and 21-17 after three, but were shutout in the fourth. Bengals receiver A.J. Green had a monster day with 224 yards and a touchdown, but Cincinnati could not get anything going on the ground. As has become the norm, rookie running back Jeremy Hill led the team in carries and yardage, but managed just 46 yards on eight touches. Losing the ground game has become a telltale sign for the Bengals, and the trend held true today.

Cincinnati was also hampered by three fumbles (two lost) and by allowing three sacks.

As ugly as today was, the next three weeks could mar the entire season.  The Bengals travel next week to play the Cleveland Browns and then host the Denver Broncos in two weeks before hitting the road to finish off their schedule.

That last game is in Pittsburgh against the Steelers, and it could easily wind up as the determining tilt for the AFC North division title.  The Steelers now sit just a half-game behind the Bengals and obviously have the ground game to keep the Bengals at home in January.

Could be a very rough December for Marvin Lewis and Company.