AFC North Week 12 Recap: Dalton Blows Bengals Comeback, Browns Remain Winless


The Pittsburgh Steelers couldn’t get help from the Cincinnati Bengals today, giving the Baltimore Ravens the lead in the AFC North.

Baltimore held off a late-Bengals’ comeback to win 19-14. The Ravens’ offense was far from spectacular but kicker Justin Tucker carried them most of the way. He converted a ridiculous three field goals of 50+ yards, connecting from 52, 54, and 57 yards out. All were perfect, down the middle, with plenty of room to spare. He’s inarguably the league’s best kicker.

But with their offense stalling out, the Bengals hung around. down by seven, and marching down the field on a 13 play drive. But Andy Dalton was strip-sacked by Elvis Dumervil on the Ravens’ 16 yard line with barely over a minute to go. The Ravens recovered and ran out the clock.

That’ll push them to 6-5 on the year, currently having tiebreaker over the Steelers by virtue of beating them this year. The Bengals fall to 3-7-1, not officially, but virtually eliminating them from any playoff aspirations.

Dalton struggled to move the football without several of his best weapons. No A.J. Green, no Gio Bernard, and Jeremy Hill battled through an ankle injury during most of the game. He leaned on Tyler Eifert, who played well, catching five passes for 68 yards and a score.

Kicker Mike Nugent continued to play poorly, missing an extra point that kept things at a 16-9 Ravens’ lead in the third quarter.

For Baltimore, their run game found added footing under Terrance West and Kenneth Dixon. The final numbers aren’t spectacular but both ran hard and were a threat out of the backfield, catching a total of six passes. Mike Wallace led them with three catches for 57 yards. Breshard Perriman had Baltimore’s lone touchdown, corkscrewing his body to make a highlight reel catch on the first drive of the game.

The Ravens will take on the Miami Dolphins next Sunday while, if you care, the Bengals will take on the Philadelphia Eagles.

Some things change, some things stay the same. It’s the latter, as it’s been all year, for the Cleveland Browns, who lost to the New York Giants 27-13. As it’s been said for most games, the Browns did hang around, but like all games, it ended the same – disappointment.

New York salted the game away with a four yard touchdown pass from Eli Manning to Odell Beckham Jr with five minutes in the game, putting them up by the game’s final score. Manning threw for just 194 yards but three touchdowns, including two to OBJ.

The Browns continue to show zero ability to protect their QB. Josh McCown was sacked seven times. Jason Pierre-Paul had three of them and added a fumble scoop and score for good measure.

Terrelle Pryor was a bright spot, snagging six balls for 131 yards while McCown found rookie Corey Coleman for Cleveland’s only touchdown.

The Browns are now 0-12 and will take a much-needed week off with their bye week. Their next game is December 11th versus Cincinnati. Maybe their best chance at a win.



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