Twas the tale of two halves for the Cincinnati Bengals. On the first fall Sunday of the young NFL season the Bengals were knocked down but not knocked out. The Bengals were able to weather the storm brought on by the Steelers and fought their way to a come from behind victory. The Bengals entered the contest with a 1-1 record coming off a stunning victory at historic Lambeua field over the Green Bay Packers and a gut wrenching miracle loss to the Denver Broncos in week 1. The Bengals were coming in on a high note and seemed poised to at least give the Steelers the best game they have given them since 2006. The Steelers were coming into the game off a heart breaking loss to the Bears and seemed vulnerable but then again the Steelers never lose in the state of Ohio when Big Ben is their QB.
The game started off perfect for the Bengals, Andre Caldwell returned the opening kick off to midfield and for a short moment it seemed this Sunday would be different than the last 5. The high moral would be short last. The Bengals did absolutely nothing on their first drive and this set the tone for the first half. Big Ben did what Big Ben does... He avoided the rush, bought time, and delivered strikes to lead the Steelers to a 13-0 lead. The only positive thing the Bengals could hang onto was the fact it was only 13-0 and not worse. The Steelers absolutely dominated the first half. Big Ben hit Wille Parker on a 27-yard pass for the only TD of the half. The Bengals were able to muster a field goal right before half to make the game 13-3. The fact the Bengals only trailed 10 at half seemed to be a moral victory for the Bengals. They played so bad and to only be down 10 points was a small victory.
The 2nd half started out with a bang. Jonathan Joseph intercepted a Big Ben pass and returned it 30 yards for a touchdown. The Bengals cut the lead to 13-9 after a botched snap. The Bengals really need to improve their snap and hold process. It has been awful this season and it cost the Bengals the playoffs in 2006. The Bengals seemed poised to make a game of it. The Steelers answered with a Big Ben QB sneak to make it 20-9. From this point on it was all Bengals. Carson and Co. entered the 4th quarter and put their game face on. Cedric Benson scampered for 23 yard touchdown to cut the lead to 20-15 after a failed 2pt conversion. The missed extra point seemed like it could be the Bengals doom. The Bengals D stopped the Steelers and finally sacked Big Ben, which gave the Bengals offense 1 more shot for a victory. Carson Palmer took the Bengals down to inside the Steelers 20 and this is when it got really exciting. The Bengals converted two 4th downs of 2 and 10 yards. Brian Leonard made the play of the game. On 4th and 10 Palmer stepped up and eluded the rush and hit Leonard 3 yards shy the first down. Leonard was tripped but was able to put his hand down and dive for the first down. It was an AWESOME play. On the next play Palmer hit Andre Caldwell for a 4-yard TD pass to take the lead. The Bengals converted on the 2pt conversion, which made the game 23-20, and there would be no miracles on this Sunday for the away team.
D's Play of the game:
- Brian Leornard's reception on 4th and 10.
The Turning Point:
- Johnathan Joseph's 30 yard Interception for a touchdown.
At Cleveland Browns