The Cincinnati Bengals took a trip to the west coast and found their swag. The Bengals waltzed into The Black Hole and promptly filled it with a 33-13 win over the Oakland Raiders. It was offensive coordinator Hue Jackson’s return trip to Oakland. He served as head coach there in 2011.
The Bengals wasted no time establishing their dominance over the Raiders. After a three and out by Oakland, along with a short punt, the Bengals took the ball and marched to a touchdown on their first possession. There was no wizardry from Hue Jackson on the drive. It was a workman-like, 11 play clock eater that ended with Jeremy Hill racing three yards into the end zone. On a fourth and one play, Hill put the moves on and raced in for the games first score.
Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton looked comfortable in the offense. He made his reads quickly and got rid of the ball before any pressure could reach him. Tight end Tyler Eifert was the main target for Dalton and amassed 104 yards on nine catches with two TDs. Dalton shined in the Bengals offense and ended his day with 269 yards. Dalton also completed 25 of 34 passes with two TDs for a passing rating of 115.9
The win was the Bengals first in 11 tries on Oakland’s home turf. The Bengals completely dismantled the Raiders from start to finish. In the second quarter, with the Bengals up 10-0, Derek Carr was lost to a hand injury. He was hit on a play scrambling from the Bengals swarming defense and never returned. He tried a few passes on the sideline but was wincing in pain. The prognosis doesn’t look good.
When the Bengals took over, they drove for another touchdown to take a 17-0 lead. Dalton hit A.J. Green across the middle for a 15 yard grab that turned into 30 yards. Running back Jeremy Hill danced his way to his second TD with 2:21 left in the half. The Bengals cruised into halftime leading 24-0, after a touchdown catch by Eifert.
The Bengals flirted with a shutout, halfway into the fourth quarter. After Dalton connected with Eifert for another score, the Bengals put it in cruise control. Cincinnati was up 30-0. The extra point was blocked. With the defense playing like hungry wolves, it was a cakewalk the rest of the way.
Marvin Lewis was proud of his team, but told reporters there was work to do. He was still irritated over a play involving Bengals defensive back Adam Jones.
“You’re supposed to make the play, go back to the huddle. We can’t have the two penalties we had in those situations today or three penalties, because those things can change a game and they can really hurt you. We have to do a better job than that. It was a good, strong win. Good effort, but we have a lot of work to do. So, we’ll get back home and get to work.”
[ Photo by Ezra Shaw / Getty Images]