Final

Bengals 38

(2-1, 1-1 away)

Redskins 31

(1-2, 0-1 home)

Coverage: CBS

1:00 PM ET, September 23, 2012

FedEx Field, Landover, MD 

1 2 3 4 T
CIN 14 10 0 1438
WSH 7 3 14 731

Top Performers

Passing: A. Dalton (CIN) - 328 YDS, 3 TD, 1 INT

Rushing: A. Morris (WSH) - 17 CAR, 78 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: A. Green (CIN) - 9 REC, 183 YDS, 1 TD

Andy Dalton throws 3 TDs as Bengals outlast Redskins

Associated Press

LANDOVER, Md. -- On the first play of the game, quarterback Andy Dalton lined up wide right, rookie receiver Mohamed Sanu took the shotgun snap, and A.J. Green darted downfield to haul in a 73-yard touchdown pass.

"It's tough overthrowing that man," Sanu said. "I just put it where he could go get it."

The Washington Redskins fans came to see some razzle-dazzle in Robert Griffin III's home debut. They saw Dalton and the Cincinnati Bengals do it better.

Sanu-to-Green was just the opening statement in a game full of innovative plays, fancy moves and mood swings. The Bengals produced three first-half touchdowns on plays that snapped the ball to three different players, blew a 17-point lead, rallied in the fourth quarter and survived a bizarre final sequence Sunday in a 38-31 win over the Redskins.

"The creativity that we've got here, talent that we have at wide (receiver), the running backs, the different things that we're doing, it's big," Dalton said. "You try to find a way to get an advantage in the game, and we found a couple today."

The Bengals (2-1) have made their reputation on defense, but now their offense looks in step with the evolving score-a-whole-lot-every-week NFL. Cincinnati's offense has put up 30-plus points in back-to-back weeks for the first time since November 2006.

"We're making plays," Green said, "all over the field."

No doubt about that. They ran several end-arounds, used a no-huddle package that befuddled the Redskins, let BenJarvus Green-Ellis take a direct snap on a 1-yard touchdown run and had touchdown completions of 48, 59 and 73 yards.

Dalton completed 19 of 27 passes for 328 yards and three touchdowns. Green caught nine passes for a career-high 183 yards and a score. The game was tied at 24 when Dalton led a pair of long fourth-quarter drives, hitting tight end Jermaine Gresham on a 6-yard completion to take the lead and Andrew Hawkins down the middle for a 59-yard strike that gave the Bengals a two-touchdown cushion with 7:08 left to play.

But Griffin has quickly proven that he's hard to shut down. He brought the Redskins (1-2) back from a 24-7 deficit, then nearly pulled even again after being down 38-24. His 2-yard run at the end of a 90-yard drive cut the lead to 38-31 with 3:35 remaining, and a potential game-tying drive went from Washington's 2 all the way to Cincinnati's 19 in the final two minutes.

Then it got weird. Griffin was sacked for a 15-yard loss. Then he spiked the ball with 7 seconds left. Then tight end Fred Davis was called for a false start. Then coach Marvin Lewis and the Bengals, anticipating a 10-second runoff, thought the game was over and walked onto the field en masse. Then an official called an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on a livid Redskins sideline.

The officials -- replacement refs while the regulars are locked out in a labor dispute with the league -- marked off a total of 25 yards for the two penalties, instead of 20.

All of which meant the game ended with Griffin's long incompletion on a third-and-50 from Washington's 41.

It was the second straight week in which an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty thwarted a Redskins drive that could've tied the game in the final two minutes. Last Sunday, Josh Morgan threw the ball at another player in a three-point loss to the St. Louis Rams.

"We can't have those type of things in those situations," Griffin said.

Morgan took responsibility immediately after his gaffe, but coach Mike Shanahan was evasive after Sunday's game when asked about the final penalty, other than to indicate there was apparent confusion among the officials.

"They threw the flag at us -- and there was half of the (Bengals) football team on the field," Shanahan said. "I was disappointed in that."

Griffin repeatedly took a pounding, taking six sacks as he completed 21 of 34 passes for 221 yards and one touchdown. He also ran 12 times for 85 yards and lost a fumble on a jarring hit by Carlos Dunlap, who was making his season debut after missing the first two games with a sprained right knee.

The Redskins had a first-quarter touchdown scored by the defense and a second-quarter field goal set up by a long kickoff return, so it wasn't until the opening drive of the third quarter that the reigning Heisman Trophy winner found some offensive rhythm, more than doubling Washington's total yardage output with an 80-yard drive capped by Alfred Morris' 7-yard run.

A 3-yard pass to Santana Moss tied the score in the third quarter, and the Redskins had all the momentum when they forced the first fumble in Green-Ellis' five-year career near midfield on Cincinnati's next drive.

But Michael Johnson's third sack forced Washington into a three-and-out. A few minutes later, Dalton led the first of the two long drives that put the Bengals ahead for good, handing the Redskins their seventh straight home loss.

Game notes


The Redskins played most of the game without LT Trent Williams, who injured his right knee and will have an MRI. Washington CBs Cedric Griffin and Crezdon Butler left the game with hamstring injuries. ... Cincinnati played without cornerback Leon Hall (injured calf).

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
CIN
WSH
1st Downs2231
Passing 1st downs
1213
Rushing 1st downs
815
1st downs from Penalties
23
3rd down efficiency
3-93-12
4th down efficiency
0-10-0
Total Plays5874
Total Yards478381
Yards per play8.25.1
Total Drives1413
Passing385179
Comp - Att
20-2821-34
Yards per pass
13.85.3
Interceptions thrown
10
Sacks - Yards Lost
2-165-42
Rushing93202
Rushing Attempts
2835
Yards per rush
3.35.8
Red Zone (Made-Att)2-33-5
Penalties8-806-60
Turnovers21
Fumbles lost
11
Interceptions thrown
10
Defensive / Special Teams TDs01
Possession27:3032:30

Passing Leaders

CINC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Dalton19/2732812.1312-16
Sanu1/17373.0100-0
WSHC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Griffin21/342216.5105-42

Rushing Leaders

CINCARYDSAVGTDLG
Green-E...17382.219
Leonard2189.0011
WSHCARYDSAVGTDLG
Morris17784.6113
Griffin13745.7119

Receiving Leaders

CINRECYDSAVGTDLGTGTS
Green918320.317311
Hawkins26633.01594
WSHRECYDSAVGTDLGTGTS
Davis79012.90297
Hankerson45614.00237

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERCINWSH
cinTD14:43A.J. Green 73 Yd Pass From Mohamed Sanu (Mike Nugent Kick) 70
wshTD11:00Rob Jackson 0 Yd Interception Return (Billy Cundiff Kick) 77
cinTD03:28Armon Binns 48 Yd Pass From Andy Dalton (Mike Nugent Kick) 147
SECOND QUARTERCINWSH
cinFG04:36Mike Nugent 47 Yd 177
cinTD03:13BenJarvus Green-Ellis 1 Yd Run (Mike Nugent Kick) 247
wshFG00:31Billy Cundiff 36 Yd 2410
THIRD QUARTERCINWSH
wshTD10:23Alfred Morris 7 Yd Run (Billy Cundiff Kick) 2417
wshTD03:29Santana Moss 3 Yd Pass From Robert Griffin (Billy Cundiff Kick) 2424
FOURTH QUARTERCINWSH
cinTD11:24Jermaine Gresham 6 Yd Pass From Andy Dalton (Mike Nugent Kick) 3124
cinTD07:08Andrew Hawkins 59 Yd Pass From Andy Dalton (Mike Nugent Kick) 3824
wshTD03:35Robert Griffin 2 Yd Run (Billy Cundiff Kick) 3831

Research Notes

Since the start of the 2008 season, the Bengals had run three plays from the wildcat formation, all rushing attempts, for eight yards and no touchdowns. Against the Redskins, the Bengals ran two wildcat plays, scored two touchdowns, including a 73-yard touchdown from Mohamed Sanu to A.J. Green on the opening play of the game.
A.J. Green had a career-high 183 yards receiving Sunday against the Redskins, and he was the Bengals' most effective weapon when they faced five or more pass rushers as well. Green finished with three receptions for 114 yards and a touchdown when the Redskins sent five or more rushers.
Andy Dalton posted a career-high 93.4 Total QBR on Sunday versus Washington. Dalton threw an interception on his first pass of the game, but from that point forward he was nearly flawless throwing for 328 yards and averaging 12.1 yards per attempt. The key to his success was an efficient deep ball, throwing for as many yards on passes beyond 10 yards past the line of scrimmage as the first two weeks combined.
  [+]
Robert Griffin III struggled to the throw the ball downfield Sunday against the Bengals after finding success with such passes in his first two games. RG3 did not complete his first pass of at least 11 yards downfield until the third quarter and completed only three such passes in the game.
  [+]
Andy Dalton was able to stretch the field effectively Sunday against the Redskins. Dalton was 5-7 for 163 yards on passes at least 15 yards downfield, including a 59-yard touchdown to Andrew Hawkins in the fourth quarter.
  [+]

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