Ravens can't recover from Bengals' dominant 1st half

Lynette Rowe
September 17, 2018

The regular season is officially one week old, and the Cincinnati Bengals are leading the AFC North outright.

Baltimore Ravens kicker Justin Tucker reacts after making a field goal in the second half of an NFL football game -against the Cincinnati Bengals, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2018, in Cincinnati. They've shown flashes of brilliance, but they haven't put it together in any sort of consistent fashion.

As a result of the Bengals' awesome first half play, especially that of Dalton, many historical comparisons of this team have been stated, but many are also tempering their expectations. They spent the offseason ridding themselves of their longtime veterans and assembled one of the youngest rosters in the league in the process. You always want to play at 100 percent, but when something is bothering you, it's hard mentally.

There certainly is potential, even though the Bengals have spent the past two games treading the line between winning and losing.

Thanks to four first-half touchdown passes from Andy Dalton - three of them to A.J. Green - the Bengals stormed out to a comfortable lead before downing the Baltimore Ravens, 34-23. The Bengals did let the Ravens stop them on a few drives offensively and defensively gave up a few plays till the Ravens just gave up in the last two minutes. There are 14 games left, and they'll get another crack at the Bengals at M&T Bank Stadium Nov. 18. "I just had to check back in mentally and physically tough it out".

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If there was positive to take away from this game, it's the success that Flacco had targeting his tight ends. We caught the ball today. If the Bengals can win, a 2-0 start would be unusual. That's why he kept going in and out of the game. "We did a good job throughout". It harassed Joe Flacco early and often and came up with just enough big plays late to hang on. They changed four of their five starters on the line, and they looked better during a 34-23 win at Indianapolis on Sunday.

If Mixon does undergo surgery and is forced to miss the next couple of weeks, Giovani Bernard is likely to start in his place with either Tra Carson or rookie Mark Walton playing backup.

"We were coming in waves all night", rookie defensive end Sam Hubbard said. The veteran pass-rusher made it a long night for Bengals right tackle Bobby Hart, and when he wasn't beating Hart into the pocket, he was batting down passes at the line of scrimmage.

"That game is behind us", Ravens safety Tony Jefferson said, according to the AP. "We've still got that bitter taste in our mouths".

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