The Cincinnati Bengals will enter their home opener Thursday night coming off a nice road win over Andrew Luck and the Colts, 34-23. Dalton had a solid performance, throwing for 243 yards and two touchdowns.
By that time, the Ravens were in deep trouble.
Baltimore: Flacco and the Ravens offense took almost an entire half of football to get into a groove, and by then it was too late. The Bengals followed with a pair of field goals, sandwiched around a Ravens' fumble forced by Cincinnati safety Shawn Williams. Two of those penalties came in the first half, with the first one (a pass interference by Tony Jefferson in the end zone) setting the Bengals up at the one-yard line, which led to their first touchdown of the game. When Justin Tucker drilled a 55-yarder early in the third quarter, it was suddenly 28-17.
The Bengals have multiple weapons on offense and not just in the passing game.
It's hard not to wonder where the Cincinnati Bengals offense and quarterback Andy Dalton would be without star wide receiver A.J. Green.More news: Saudi, Iranian envoys call on Nawaz Sharif, condole demise of Begum Kulsoom
Flacco frustrated the Bengals late in the third quarter.
Baltimore held the Bills to just 33 yards and no first downs in the first half.
But once they crossed the 50, disaster struck.
Instead, Dalton found Tyler Boyd open in the middle of a pack of defenders at the 23-yard line. The Ravens already look far better this year than last year.
In Week 2 against the Ravens in primetime, however, Green was the spotlight.More news: NASA posts phenomenal video of Hurricane Florence from station
Baltimore have rung the changes at WR and it payed off big time on Sunday with Michael Crabtree, Willie Sneed & John Brown all heavily involved. They've overcome a 21-point deficit to win a game only once in their history, beating the Arizona Cardinals 30-27 in 2011. Boyd lined up slightly behind Green split to the left and when they crossed to begin their routes they got the matchup they wanted. Before his two-catch, 17-yard effort in the 2017 finale, Green racked up 37 catches for 678 yards and six touchdowns in the previous six meetings.
The Ravens have a pretty good secondary, and they had no chance against Green. Baltimore's offense is probably somewhere in between what we've seen the past two weeks, which isn't much different from what they've shown the past few years. Rookie C Billy Price hurt his right ankle in the first quarter and didn't return. His passer rating of 121.7 was his highest since 2014. Joe Mixon had 149 all-purpose yards and a touchdown. Add in Lamar Jackson and the Ravens have more weapons than they have had in a long time.
Mosley, who is in the final year of his rookie contract, was selected in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Bates actually got his hand on the ball, but not enough of it. The Ravens never led the game on Thursday night, after Green's hot start. Flacco finished the half 11 of 21 for 164 yards thanks to that ball to Brown. The Ravens switched up their coverages on Green but couldn't stop him. The Bengals rolled out the Jumbo package that produced Mixon's one-yard touchdown run in Indy on Sunday with Jake Fisher the extra tackle and Hubbard the fullback.
On second down Dalton faked a run pitch to the left, rolled right and saw Green slanting inside cornerback Tavon Young from the left and running across the back of the end zone and he hit Green racing into the right corner for a 7-0 lead with 10:35 left on the four-yard pass.
What a start it was for the Ravens in week one. All they needed to do was beat the division-rival Cincinnati Bengals, whom they blanked 20-0 in Week 1.More news: Hurricane Florence Produces Wind Gusts Near 100 miles per hour in Eastern North Carolina