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Dalton's late TD pass to Green lifts Bengals over Falcons

Sun Sep 30 4:58pm ET
By CHARLES ODUM
AP Sports Writer

Players: Matt Bryant, Matt Ryan, Andy Dalton, A.J. Green, Tyler Eifert, Giovani Bernard, Devonta Freeman, Tyler Boyd, Joe Mixon, Mark Walton, Calvin Ridley

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton (14) walks off the field after the second half of an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. The Cincinnati Bengals won 37-36. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green (18) celebrates his game-winning catch against the Atlanta Falcons during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. The Cincinnati Bengals won 37-36. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green (18) makes a touchdown catch against the Atlanta Falcons during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. The Cincinnati Bengals won 37-36. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Calvin Ridley (18) runs into he end zone for a touchdown against the Cincinnati Bengals during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis speaks to players during the second half of an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) is sacked by Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap (96) during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Atlanta Falcons defensive back Keith Tandy (35) celebrates a fumble recovery against the Cincinnati Bengals during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Cincinnati Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert (85) is taken off the field after being injured against the Atlanta Falcons during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)


Atlanta Falcons kicker Matt Bryant (3) kicks a 55-yard field goal against Cincinnati Bengals during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Cincinnati Bengals defensive back Shawn Williams (36) ties up Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)


Atlanta Falcons running back Tevin Coleman (26) runs against Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Jordan Evans (50) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)


Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Mohamed Sanu (12) makes the catch against Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Hardy Nickerson (56) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)


Cincinnati Bengals defensive back Jessie Bates (30) tackles Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Mohamed Sanu (12) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)


Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Calvin Ridley (18) runs into the end zone for a touchdown against Cincinnati Bengals cornerback William Jackson (22) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Atlanta Falcons linebacker Vic Beasley (44) defends as Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton (14) throws a pass during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Cincinnati Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert (85) runs into the end zone for a touchdown against Atlanta Falcons cornerback Damontae Kazee (27) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)


Atlanta Falcons running back Ito Smith (25) signifies a first down against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)


Atlanta Falcons tight end Logan Paulsen (82) runs into the end zone for a touchdown against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)


ATLANTA (AP) Andy Dalton threw a 13-yard touchdown pass to A.J. Green with 7 seconds remaining, lifting the Cincinnati Bengals to a 37-36 win over the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.

Dalton moved the Bengals 75 yards in about four minutes. He completed two passes on fourth down to Tyler Boyd, who had 11 catches for 100 yards, to keep the drive alive.

Green, the former University of Georgia star making his first return to the state of Georgia, made a diving catch in the right side of the end zone to cap the drive. He had four catches for 78 yards.

Giovani Bernard ran for 69 yards and two touchdowns for Cincinnati (3-1).

Matt Ryan continued his resurgence by throwing three scoring passes, including two to rookie Calvin Ridley, for the Falcons. As was the case last week, when he had his first career game with five touchdown passes in a loss to New Orleans, Ryan had too little support from an injury-depleted defense.

The Falcons (1-3) topped 30 points for the third straight week. Ryan, the 2016 NFL MVP, has thrown eight touchdown passes in his past two weeks and has 10 through four games after throwing only 20 in 2017.

Atlanta's Matt Bryant, who kicked three field goals, including a 55-yard field goal in the second quarter, was good from 32 yards to give the Falcons a 36-31 lead with 4:15 remaining.

That was too much time for Dalton, who completed 29 of 41 passes for 336 yards and three touchdowns and one interception.

There were no punts in the first half. The Bengals scored touchdowns on each of their four possessions.

Ridley had scoring catches of 11 and 30 yards, giving him five in his past two games and six for the season.

Ridley's second TD catch, a 30-yarder, gave Atlanta a 33-28 lead early in the fourth quarter when the 2-point pass attempt was no good.

Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert had four catches for 38 yards, including a 15-yard scoring catch in the first quarter, before suffering a gruesome lower right leg injury early in the third quarter.

Eifert, the team's third-leading receiver entering the game, caught a 2-yard pass and was tackled by De'Vondre Campbell and Jack Crawford. Eifert brought his hands up to his helmet as he was on his back in obvious pain. His leg stabilized by the medical staff, Eifert received encouragement from teammates before he was carted off the field.

Each team was without its top running back. Devonta Freeman missed his third straight game for Atlanta with a sore right knee. Joe Mixon was held out for the second straight week for the Bengals after having debris removed from his right knee.

INJURY REPORT

Bengals halfback Mark Walton did not return and was being treated for a possible concussion after a helmet-to-helmet penalty hit by Brian Poole near the end of the third. Falcons defensive tackle Grady Jarrett had an ankle injury late in the fourth and did not return.

UP NEXT

Bengals: host Miami Dolphins next Sunday.

Falcons: Visit the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday in first road game since opening season at Philadelphia.

Player Notes
Bruce Ellington Feb 15 9:10pm ET

The Detroit Lions released wide receiver Bruce Ellington, safety Glover Quinn and linebacker Nicholas Grigsby on Friday. Ellington signed with the Lions after they traded Golden Tate to the Eagles and became their slot receiver until he landed on Injured Reserve on Dec. 22. He had 23 catches for 132 yards in four games for Detroit. Ellington's best year came in 2017 with the Texans when he had 29 catches for 330 yards and two touchdowns. Wherever he signs, he'll battle for a roster spot in training camp.

From RotoBaller

Charles Clay Feb 15 9:10pm ET

The Buffalo Bills released tight end Charles Clay on Friday. Clay provided only 21 catches (36 targets) for 184 yards (career-low 8.8 yards per catch) and no touchdowns in 13 games for Buffalo in 2018. He was rarely in the game plan for the Bills the last two seasons and won't be a very popular target on the free-agent market. His best season came in 2013 with the Dolphins when he had 69 receptions (103 targets) for 759 yards and six scores over a full season. The days of Clay being on fantasy rosters is over.

From RotoBaller

Nick Foles Feb 15 9:00pm ET

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles would "probably" be interested in playing for the New York Giants if they decide to move on from Eli Manning, according to one person with knowledge of Foles' thinking. Foles landing with the Giants would be less likely if the Eagles place the franchise tag on him, which is unlikely. The Jaguars are another team to watch out for, and there is mutual interest between them and Foles. After winning Super Bowl MVP two years ago and playing well as a starter again in 2018 when Carson Wentz was injured, Foles should earn a starting gig on the open market with several teams looking for a signal caller. While Foles has QB1 upside in the right matchups, his 2019 fantasy value will ultimately depend on where he winds up.

From RotoBaller

Le'Veon Bell Feb 15 8:40pm ET

All indications are that the Pittsburgh Steelers plan to use the transition tag on running back Le'Veon Bell by the deadline on March 5. It's expected to have a value of $9.5 million to $14.5 million for one season and gives the Steelers a chance to match any offer he'd receive on the open market. Pittsburgh doesn't plan on matching any offer to retain Bell, but only to trade him. However, even if the Steelers find a taker in a trade, they'd need Bell to sign the transition tag first, which is highly unlikely. This situation continues to get uglier, but Bell won't be playing in Pittsburgh in 2019 no matter what. Despite having 1,229 rushing attempts in five seasons, Bell is in the prime of his career and has reached the 1,000-yard mark three times. He's one of the more versatile backs in the NFL and should remain an RB1 in his next home.

From RotoBaller

Patrick Peterson Feb 15 9:03am ET

Arizona Cardinals CB Patrick Peterson will return to shadowing the top opposing wide receivers in 2019, according to defensive coordinator Vance Joseph.

Mike Gillislee Feb 15 9:03am ET

Free-agent RB Mike Gillislee (Saints) worked out for the Detroit Lions Thursday, Feb. 14.

Danny Amendola Feb 14 11:23pm ET

Miami Dolphins WR Danny Amendola could fill the slot receiver role for the Detroit Lions in 2019 because of his connection to head coach Matt Patricia, in the opinion of Bill Barnwell of ESPN.com.

Emmanuel Sanders Feb 14 10:43pm ET

Denver Broncos WR Emmanuel Sanders (Achilles') said he is no longer wearing a walking boot but still has a 'slight limp' when walking around.

Fantasy Spin: After suffering an Achilles' injury late in the year, it wouldn't be a surprise to see Sanders miss time in 2019. He showed last year that he can be a WR2 as the top option in Denver's passing attack, but fantasy owners will need to be patient as he returns to form.

Chad Williams Feb 14 10:13pm ET

Arizona Cardinals WR Chad Williams caught 37 percent of the passes thrown his way in 2018 and had two catches or less in all but two games.

Laquon Treadwell Feb 14 10:03pm ET

Minnesota Vikings WR Laquon Treadwell averaged 5.7 yards per target last year, the fourth-worst mark among receivers with at least 50 targets, and Bill Barnwell of ESPN.com expects Treadwell's fifth-year option to be declined.

Fantasy Spin: The former first-round pick has been a bust, and he didn't show any signs of righting the ship despite a bigger role in 2018. Even in dynasty formats, it may be time to give up on Treadwell.

Golden Tate Feb 14 9:53pm ET

Philadelphia Eagles impending free-agent WR Golden Tate and Washington Redskins impending free-agent WR Jamison Crowder are options to fill the need the Green Bay Packers have at slot receiver, according to Bill Barnwell of ESPN.com.

Fantasy Spin: The Packers need a dependable option to support Davante Adams, and both Tate and Crowder would quickly become potential WR3 options if Aaron Rodgers is throwing them the ball.

Keanu Neal Feb 14 9:33pm ET

Atlanta Falcons SS Keanu Neal (knee) posted a video of himself going through agility drills without a brace on his injured left knee.

Colt McCoy Feb 14 9:13pm ET

Washington Redskins QB Colt McCoy (leg) was seen without any braces or supports for his injured leg.

Denzel Perryman Feb 14 8:43pm ET

Los Angeles Chargers impending free-agent LB Denzel Perryman will be re-signed this offseason if the Chargers have their way, according to a source.

Colin Kaepernick Feb 14 8:13pm ET

Updating a previous report, free-agent QB Colin Kaepernick (49ers) desired at least $20 million to play in the Alliance of American Football, according to a source.

Nick Foles Feb 14 7:53pm ET

Free-agent QB Nick Foles (Eagles) is expected to 'keep tabs on' the New York Giants this offseason, according to NJ.com's Zack Rosenblatt. A source with knowledge of Foles' thinking said the former Super Bowl MVP would 'probably' be interested in starting for the Giants if they were to release QB Eli Manning.

Fantasy Spin: There are many pieces that must fall in order for Foles to the Giants to work out. It's a sensible destination, though, with Odell Beckham Jr. and Saquon Barkley leading one of the most talented offenses in the NFL. Foles could be the piece that makes them take a forward step. Were this signing to come to fruition, Foles would demand QB1 consideration given the pieces that would be around him.

Nick Foles Feb 14 7:53pm ET

Free-agent QB Nick Foles (Eagles) is not expected to return to the Philadelphia Eagles as the backup to Carson Wentz.

Fantasy Spin: Foles deserves a starting job. He won't want to play as a backup and make less money when there are teams willing to pay him to be their starter. He can be a part of the QB1 conversation if he lands in the right spot. Of course, when Wentz is healthy he too has QB1 appeal.

Colin Kaepernick Feb 14 7:13pm ET

Free-agent QB Colin Kaepernick (49ers) and former NFL QB Tim Tebow were asked if they wanted to join the Alliance of American Football, according to league co-founder Bill Polian. Polian said he doesn't know what transpired with Kaepernick, but added that he spoke personally with Tebow, who declined.

Antonio Brown Feb 14 6:53pm ET

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Antonio Brown and Steelers impending free-agent RB Le'Veon Bell are not expected to be intensely pursued by the Indianapolis Colts this offseason. The Colts will have the most salary cap space in the league this offseason and will do their due diligence, but Brown's off-field drama and Bell's asking price may be too much for the Colts.

Fantasy Spin: The Colts did just fine last year without the services of Brown or Bell. Brown seems like more of an immediate need, but general manager Chris Ballard wants a cohesive and cooperative locker room. While the fantasy marriage of Brown and/or Bell with the Colts might be ideal, don't get your hopes up.

Sean Lee Feb 14 4:33pm ET

Dallas Cowboys LB Sean Lee is considered a strong candidate to be cut this offseason, in the opinion of NFL.com's Gregg Rosenthal. Lee's extensive injury history, $10 million cap hit and the presence of fellow LBs Leighton Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith don't bode well for a possible return.