2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Bengals' goal-line stands set up wins

By JOE KAY - AP Sports Writer
    2013-10-16 16:16

CINCINNATI (AP) - The Patriots had first-and-goal, less than 3 feet away from a momentum-switching touchdown. They couldn't get it, settling for a field goal and a stunning 13-6 loss that stopped Tom Brady's touchdown streak.

A week later, the Bills had first-and-goal at the 2-yard line, looking to grab the lead. They ran four plays and got nowhere, turning it over on downs. Eventually, they also lost the game, 27-24 in overtime, and came away regretting the 2 yards that were too much.

Cincinnati's best moments on defense have come right in front of its end zone.

The Bengals have pulled off goal-line stands each of the last two weeks for wins over New England and Buffalo. They're 4-2 and alone in first place in the AFC North for the first time since 2009, and a resilient defense has played a big role in it.

Those stands have come to define a defense that again ranks among the league's top 10.

''It's just all about attitude, their will against ours,'' defensive tackle Domata Peko said. ''We put our foot on the gas pedal and shut them down.''

The first one became a footnote to history.

New England trailed 13-3 in the fourth quarter when Danny Amendola caught Brady's pass while falling down at the 1-yard line. Safety Chris Crocker touched him down as he rolled into the end zone.

That touch prevented a touchdown. Brady threw two incompletions and a run went nowhere, forcing a field goal. It was Brady's best chance to extend his streak of 52 consecutive games with a touchdown pass, second-longest in NFL history.

With that, the defense had its first moment in the spotlight.

''We're still creating our image or whatever you want to call us,'' Peko said. ''I know one thing about our defense: We never give up.''

In Buffalo on Sunday, the Bills drove to a first-and-goal from the 2-yard line. A run gained a yard, and two more runs were stuffed. Thad Lewis was sacked on a fourth-down play while trying to scramble and throw.

The Bengals then went 98 yards in nine plays for a touchdown and a 17-7 lead. That defensive stand wound up as an early turning point.

''Yeah, it's big,'' quarterback Andy Dalton said. ''For them to come in and stop them on the goal line just kind of shows the attitude of our defense and shows what we can do and the type of guys that we have.''

The defense had a lapse in the fourth quarter, allowing the Bills to tie it on a 40-yard touchdown pass. It forced a three-and-out in overtime, setting up Mike Nugent's 43-yard field goal.

The two goal-line stands have given the defense a bit of a swagger when the other team is in scoring range. The Bengals are ranked No. 8 on defense heading into a game Sunday at Detroit (4-2), which has the league's sixth-ranked passing game.

''There's just a lot of confidence,'' safety Taylor Mays said. ''It's something to get excited about. It means a lot. The goal-line stand is one of the best things you can do on defense.''

--

NOTES: Dalton was honored on Wednesday as the AFC's Offensive Player of the Week for his performance in Buffalo. Dalton completed 26 of 40 for 337 yards with three touchdowns, one interception and a season-high passer rating of 105.9. ... RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis was excused from practice on Wednesday because of illness. CB Terence Newman was held out with a sore abdomen. C Kyle Cook was limited by a shoulder injury. ... CB Leon Hall had a full practice. He missed two games with a hamstring injury and played the entire game at Buffalo.

--

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Peyton ManningDec 18 07:22p

Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning (thigh, illness) said his illness is behind him, and he was receiving treatment for his thigh Thursday, Dec. 18. Head coach John Fox called Manning day-to-day.

Roy MillerDec 18 07:12p

The Jacksonville Jaguars have declared DL Andre Branch, CB Jeremy Harris, SS Matt Daniels, DL Roy Miller, CB Teddy Williams, WR Tommy Streeter, OG Tyler Shatley inactive for Week 16.

Tommy StreeterDec 18 07:12p

The Jacksonville Jaguars have declared DL Andre Branch, CB Jeremy Harris, SS Matt Daniels, DL Roy Miller, CB Teddy Williams, WR Tommy Streeter, OG Tyler Shatley inactive for Week 16.

Kendall WrightDec 18 07:12p

Tennessee Titans WR Kendall Wright (hand) is active for Week 16 after being limited in practice all week.

Frank GoreDec 18 07:02p

San Francisco 49ers RB Frank Gore (concussion) continues through the concussion protocol this week, but head coach Jim Harbaugh anticipates Gore suiting up in Week 16 against the San [ More ]

Julius ThomasDec 18 06:52p

Denver Broncos TE Julius Thomas (ankle) played just 29 snaps in Week 15; only ten of them were pass routes, according to Pro Football Focus.

Rashad JenningsDec 18 06:12p

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) did not practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

Carlos HydeDec 18 05:52p

San Francisco 49ers RB Carlos Hyde (ankle) did not practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

DeAndre HopkinsDec 18 05:42p

Houston Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins (ankle) did not practice for the second straight day Thursday, Dec. 18.

Blake BortlesDec 18 04:22p

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles has earned positive reviews from the team in his rookie season after being thrust into the spotlight early this year. 'That is not the [ More ]

Jay CutlerDec 18 04:12p

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler was benched just for this week against the Detroit Lions, according to head coach Marc Trestman. Cutler will be active and serve as the [ More ]

DeAngelo WilliamsDec 18 04:02p

Carolina Panthers RB DeAngelo Williams (hand) will be fitted cast that he can play with on his injured hand. Williams still has not caught a pass with the injured [ More ]

Rashad JenningsDec 18 04:02p

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) has not been able to do any running this week, according to head coach Tom Coughlin.

Ryan MathewsDec 18 03:42p

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews (ankle) did not participate in practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

Cam NewtonDec 18 02:52p

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) fully participated in practice Thursday, Dec. 18, and appears to be on track to start in Week 16, according to head coach Ron Rivera.

DeMarco MurrayDec 18 02:42p

Dallas Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray (hand), who was expected to take some team snaps in practice Thursday, Dec. 18, is in no more risk if he plays in Week [ More ]

Cam NewtonDec 18 02:12p

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) said he is not dealing with any pain in his back but is taking things one day at a time. Newton said he [ More ]

Peyton ManningDec 18 02:02p

Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning (thigh) left practice early Thursday, Dec. 18, because he is receiving a scheduled day of rest. Manning was not limping when he was walking to the locker room.

LeSean McCoyDec 18 01:32p

Philadelphia Eagles RB Chris Polk appears to have become the team's goal-line back of late, and two of the three snaps he played in Week 15 led to short [ More ]

Chris PolkDec 18 01:32p

Philadelphia Eagles RB Chris Polk appears to have become the team's goal-line back of late, and two of the three snaps he played in Week 15 led to short [ More ]

Cam NewtonDec 18 01:22p

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) had an increased set of repetitions in practice Thursday, Dec. 18, and it looks like he's on track to play in Week 16 [ More ]

Rashad JenningsDec 18 12:52p

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) is not participating in practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

Andre JohnsonDec 18 12:52p

Houston Texans WR Andre Johnson (concussion) has cleared the leagues concussion protocol and will play in the team's Week 16 game.

Julio JonesDec 18 12:12p

Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (hip) is not participating in practice Thursday, Dec. 18.

Case KeenumDec 18 10:03a

Houston Texans QB Case Keenum is expected to start in Week 16.

Philip RiversDec 18 09:22a

San Diego Chargers QB Philip Rivers (back) is battling a back injury that is more severe than the team has acknowledged, according to a league source. Rivers' back injury [ More ]

LeSean McCoyDec 18 01:03a

Philadelphia Eagles RB LeSean McCoy opened practice on the sidelines Wednesday, Dec. 17, while RB Chris Polk opened with first-team reps. After practice McCoy did not seem too concerned. [ More ]

Ronnie HillmanDec 18 01:03a

The Denver Broncos are hopeful RB Ronnie Hillman (foot) will be able to return for the Week 16 game against the Cincinnati Bengals Monday, Dec. 22, or for the [ More ]

Drew StantonDec 17 07:33p

Arizona Cardinals QB Drew Stanton (knee) said this injury is different from any other he's ever had, and he said it's too soon to know if he could return [ More ]

Carlos HydeDec 17 07:03p

San Francisco 49ers RBs Frank Gore (concussion) and Carlos Hyde (ankle) did not take part in practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

Jay CutlerDec 17 06:43p

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler will be benched in favor of QB Jimmy Clausen in Week 16 against the Detroit Lions, according to a source.

Jimmy ClausenDec 17 06:43p

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler will be benched in favor of QB Jimmy Clausen in Week 16 against the Detroit Lions, according to a source.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group