Sunday, December 30, 2012
Wrap-up: Bengals 23, Ravens 14
By Jamison Hensley
My thoughts on the Cincinnati Bengals' 23-14 victory over the visiting Baltimore Ravens:
What it means: In a game when both teams played their backups for most of the game, the Bengals (10-6) won for the seventh time in eight games and ended their four-game losing streak to the Ravens. Cincinnati had already clinched a postseason spot a week ago and was locked into the No. 6 seed. The loss makes Baltimore (10-6) the fourth seed in the AFC. The Ravens will host the Indianapolis Colts.
Thumbs up: Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap. He intercepted backup quarterback Tyrod Taylor in the fourth quarter and returned it 14 yards for a touchdown. It was the third straight game that the Bengals' defense has scored a touchdown and the second in a row that the Bengals have brought back an interception for a score. This is a dangerous group.
Injury concerns: The Ravens rested six starters, but they didn't come out unscathed. Pro Bowl fullback Vonta Leach was injured on the second play, and right tackle Kelechi Osemele was also injured. There were no updates on either player during the game. Bengals running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis hurt his hamstring in pregame warmups and didn't play. Safety Chris Crocker injured his quadriceps and didn't return.
What's next: The Ravens know they will host the Colts next weekend in the first round of the playoffs. The Bengals will play at the No. 3 seed next weekend. Who's the No. 3? If the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots win this afternoon, Cincinnati is at the Houston Texans. If the Broncos lose and the Patriots win, the Bengals are at Denver. If the Patriots lose, the Bengals are at New England.