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A Great Bengals Season Ends in Heart Breaking Playoff Loss to Chargers

The Cincinnati Bengals were hosting the San Diego Chargers at home in the first home playoff game for Cincinnati since 2010.

The game started with an immediate touchdown from little Danny Woodhead whose five-yard TD run gave the Chargers a 7-0 lead.  The Bengals would get 10 points back in a fantastic second quarter where the offense and defense dominated giving the Bengals the lead going into the half.  Jermaine Gresham would score the Bengals touchdown on Andy Dalton’s first TD pass in three post season games.

Things were looking good for the Bengals at the half.  They were shutting down Philip Rivers and the Chargers passing game as San Diego did not have a single reception from a wide receiver before halftime.  The fans in Paul Brown stadium were loud and watching a team that had gone a perfect 8-0 at home during the regular season.

If the second half could have been skipped all together the Bengals would have been in a much better situation, but unfortunately for them it’s not a two-quarter game it’s a four-quarter game. The Bengals seem to forget they were home with the way they had played in the third quarter this game.

The Chargers would take the lead with a touchdown and a field goal in the third quarter and another field goal early in the fourth. In seven minutes between the two quarters the Chargers scored 13 unaswered points to take a 20-10 lead. Dalton was intercepted and fumbled the ball during that horrific seven minutes, it was the Andy Dalton Bengals fans were praying they wouldn’t see in the post season, but unfortunately their wish wasn’t in the cards.

There was still plenty of time for a Bengals comeback, but the Chargers had all the momentum and even scored a late touchdown thanks to a Ronnie Brown 58-yard run.  That was the final nail in the coffin as the the Bengals lost a heart breaker at home in the post season 27-10 to the San Diego Chargers.

It was a weird game for Dalton, he would go 29/51 with 334 yards passing, one touchdown, but also through two crucial interceptions. Meanwhile, Philip Rivers would only go 12/16 with 128 yards and a touchdown while Ronnie Brown and Danny Woodhead were the stars for San Diego with their two rushing touchdowns.

Marvin Jones would have 8 receptions for the game with 130 yards but couldn’t find the endzone. Giovanni Bernard showed his potential rushing for 45 yards and also adding 73 yards receiving.  However a fumble prevented a possible touchdown for the rookie running back.

A team that was 8-0 at home for 2013 was probably wishing it was still 2013. On this day, the Chargers did it all, pressuring Andy Dalton throughout the second half.  The Chargers defense also controlled star wide receiver AJ Green who only had three receptions for 34 yards on the day. Add in key turnovers and that was all she wrote for the Bengals. I tip my hat off to the Chargers defense as they played a heck of a game against a Cincinnati offense that was a scoring machine all season at Paul Brown Stadium.

The Bengals should be proud of how their season went it was a great year, its disappointing that this game was probably one of their worst and there will be a lot of questions about Dalton, Marvin Lewis and if its time for a change. I personally think they should have someone else act as GM and have Lewis focus on the team. We can’t forget defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer and whether or not another NFL will try to hire him as their head coach. Personally I think this team has a very bright future and that includes Andy Dalton as the starting QB for years to come.

So to end off this season, let’s thank the Bengals for the great season and prepare to be excited for the next season and one last time until August, you boys make me proud to be a fan, WHO DEY!


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