CINCINNATI -- The AFC North champions experienced a quick hook in the playoffs.
In the opening game of the postseason, the Cincinnati Bengals fell behind early and couldn’t make up ground in a 24-14 defeat to the New York Jets. It was the second time in six days Cincinnati (10-7) lost to New York (10-7).
The playoffs are all about making the most of opportunities, and the Bengals failed at that miserably Saturday. They blew two timeouts with poor coaching challenges, allowed big passing plays to a rookie quarterback, and kicker Shayne Graham missed two key field goals in the second half.
These openings were all the Jets needed to advance to the divisional round. New York proved last week was no fluke by scoring 21 unanswered points to take control of the game.
Cincinnati has not won a playoff game since the 1990 season. This was the first postseason berth in four years for the Bengals, who finished 1-4 in their last five games.
The 2009 season for the Bengals included several landmarks, such as sweeping the AFC North division. But an early playoff exit was not what this team had in mind.