NFL Nation: 2013 Week 9 CIN at MIA Rapid Reaction
November, 1, 2013
By Coley Harvey | ESPN.com
MIAMI -- A few thoughts on the Cincinnati Bengals' 22-20 overtime loss to the Miami Dolphins.
What it means: Thursday night's game was about one thing for the Bengals: survival. They nearly did just that. Unfortunately, in the end, it was the Dolphins' defense that had more mettle. Miami was able to come through with the win after bringing relentless pressure on Cincinnati quarterback Andy Dalton in the middle of the overtime period. It was Cameron Wake's blitz past Bengals guard Kevin Zeitler that led to the game-winning safety. This loss doesn't mean the Bengals are a bad team, it just means that they didn't have quite enough gas in the tank after a rough nine-week stretch to start the season.
Stock watch: Giovani Bernard continues to impress. The rookie's weaving, winding, tackle-breaking 35-yard touchdown run near the start of the fourth quarter wasn't just the latest in a stream of highlights for the South Florida native; it may have been the best array of moves he has showcased since donning a Bengals uniform. Reminiscent of the king of extending the play, Barry Sanders, the run started with a pitch right, saw a cutback to the left sideline and concluded as a score in the middle of the field. The Dolphins missed five tackles on the play. Bernard finished with 79 yards on nine carries and two scores. One of his touchdowns came at the end of a drive in which he carried the ball four times for 27 yards. It sparked the comeback. Bernard's successful game might have had a minor cost, however: He was run from it with a rib injury.
Geno sacked: The Bengals lost one of their big defensive stoppers in the second quarter when defensive tackle Geno Atkins suffered a right-knee injury. It wasn't clear by the end of the game exactly how much time, if any, he might miss because of the injury, but the ailment itself appeared at the time to be rather significant. He needed assistance as he gingerly walked off the field.
What's next? The Bengals take their 6-3 record on the road to face Baltimore on Nov. 10. With nine days to heal their very weary bones, the timing of the AFC North matchup couldn't be better. It will also be the end of a four-cities-in-five-weeks tour, on which they are now 3-1.
October, 31, 2013
By James Walker | ESPN.com
MIAMI -- A few thoughts on the Miami Dolphins' 22-20 overtime win over the Cincinnati Bengals.
What it means: The Dolphins (4-4) climb back to .500 at the midpoint of their season. The game was won on a safety in overtime by defensive end Cameron Wake, who had three sacks in the game. Miami also snapped a four-game losing streak by beating a solid Bengals team (6-3). The Dolphins showed flashes of what they can be when everyone is on the same page. Miami suffered through a lot of issues behind the scenes during the week but held the team together to pick up its best win since Week 2 against the Indianapolis Colts. This was a gritty overtime win that might be the game that can energize the Dolphins' season.
Stock watch: Besides Wake, who was the star of the game, Dolphins cornerback Brent Grimes also stepped up big. Opponents often have thrown away from Grimes. But the Bengals were not afraid to test him, and they paid for it in the third quarter when Grimes returned an interception 94 yards for a touchdown. It was the first touchdown of Grimes’ career. Miami's defense picked off Dalton three times in the game.
The stock down goes to the second half and overtime for Miami’s offense, which went cold after intermission and allowed the Bengals to get back in the game and force overtime. Miami’s defense was on the field most of the third and fourth quarters. The Dolphins also couldn't get anything going offensively in overtime. Miami's defense scored a touchdown in the third quarter and the game-winning safety in overtime.
Injury wire: The Dolphins lost three key players in this game. Starting guard Richie Incognito suffered a neck injury in the first quarter and didn’t return to the game. Miami starting cornerback Dimitri Patterson also got injured late in the fourth quarter. Backup cornerback Nolan Carroll suffered a concussion in the second quarter and did not return.
What’s next: The Dolphins will host the winless Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-7) on Nov. 11 on “Monday Night Football.” Miami will get 11 days to prepare for this game. This is perhaps the most winnable game of the season for the Dolphins.
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