Posted October 29, 2013 on
AP on Fox
San Francisco 49ers
New York Jets
While the Cincinnati Bengals' surge has them in control of the AFC North, the Miami Dolphins must find a way to turn things around before their season slips away.
The visiting Bengals look for a fifth consecutive victory while trying to hand the Dolphins a fifth straight defeat Thursday night.
Paced by the recent strong play of quarterback Andy Dalton, Cincinnati (6-2) is the only team in the division at .500 or better, and it's in position to win five in a row for the second time in three seasons.
"We're very good," safety Chris Crocker said. "We're very, very, very good. But we have to play like it."
The Bengals have scored 103 points in the last three games, largely because of Dalton. The third-year player has passed for at least 325 yards in each of those contests and became the first Bengal to throw 11 touchdowns over a three-game span.
Dalton, intercepted just twice in that stretch, threw a career-high five TD passes in a 49-9 home win over the New York Jets on Sunday.
"This is where I want to be," said Dalton, who had five TDs and five INTs through the first five games. "This is how I want to be playing."
Four of Dalton's touchdowns against the Jets went to Marvin Jones, who became the first receiver to record that many in a game since Terrell Owens and Randy Moss in 2007.
A second-year pro playing alongside star A.J. Green, Jones finished with career highs of 122 yards and eight catches. He's recorded six of his team-leading seven touchdowns in the last three games.
"He's had the potential since he's been here," Dalton said. "I think he's just comfortable with everything that we're doing and everything that we're asking him to do."
The defense is ranked fifth in the NFL with 18.0 points allowed per game and eighth with 322.5 total yards given up. Cincinnati recorded four sacks and returned two interceptions for touchdowns Sunday during its most lopsided victory in coach Marvin Lewis' 11 seasons.
However, Lewis wants his team to move on and get focused on Miami during this short week.
"We've got to be the best team Thursday night, plain and simple," he said. "It's us and the Dolphins and, we've got to be the best team. There's no other challenge. We knew the schedule. That's the way it is. There's no ifs, ands or buts about it. You come, be ready to go."
The desperate Dolphins' four-game slide is their worst since a seven-game skid to open 2011. Miami (3-4) blew a 14-point halftime lead at New England on Sunday, getting outscored 24-0 in the final two quarters of a 27-17 loss.
"Obviously we aren't at an all-time high right now," quarterback Ryan Tannehill said. "But we've got to get back on track. That's the only option we have with a short week."
Though the Dolphins have been outscored 67-24 in the second half of the past four games after outscoring their first three opponents 41-16 in the final two quarters, they've led in each of the last three contests. They've held the lead or been tied in the fourth quarter of two.
"We have to do a better job to close out games," said receiver Mike Wallace, who has two 100-yard receiving games and one TD in his first season with the Dolphins. "We just have to step on their throat. We can't let up, that's all - the whole team, in all three phases."
Tannehill has thrown five TDs in the last two games, but seven of his nine interceptions have come in the past four. He boasts a 60.9 fourth-quarter passer rating and has been sacked a league-high 32 times, with the latter playing a big part in his five lost fumbles.
Brandon Gibson has caught three of Tannehill's 11 touchdowns, but he suffered a season-ending knee injury against the Patriots.
Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas have helped Miami rush for 276 yards in the last two games, including a season-high 156 against the Patriots. The Bengals are eighth in the league with 97.2 yards per game allowed on the ground, though they're likely to be without starting middle linebacker Ray Maualuga after he injured his knee and suffered a concussion against the Jets.
Miami coach Joe Philbin still believes his team is capable of getting back on track.
"If you don't have a strong locker room, if you don't have good character individuals, I think it could be a concern," he said. "I have a lot of faith in our guys. I believe in them. I think we'll get this thing right and fixed. We have to do it quickly; this is a good team coming in here on Thursday night."
Miami has won the last two meetings with the Bengals, both in Cincinnati. The most recent came last Oct. 7, when Tannehill didn't throw a touchdown or an interception and the Dolphins picked off Dalton twice in a 17-13 victory. Green had nine receptions for 65 yards and a score.
BEST OF MAXIM
The Bengals will have to work extra hard to protect Andy Dalton Thursday night with Left Tackle Andrew Whitworth likely out with a knee injury
The surging Cincinnati Bengals (6-2) travel to Miami Thursday night to take on the reeling Dolphins. The Dolphins started the season 3-0 but have lost four straight. The Bengals will be fighting to extend their two and a half game lead in...
Andy Dalton, QB Last Week: Mike Glennon (The Carolina Panthers are the toughest team against fantasy QBs and the rookie out of Tampa Bay managed to put up 15 fantasy points on them with no interceptions.) There’s something on fire in Cincinatti and it’s not Andy Dalton’s hair – it’s his game. This past Sunday, the red-headed wonder completed 19 of 30 passes for 325 yards...
Bengals QB Andy Dalton had a monster game Sunday versus the Jets.Fantasy Spin:Dalton torched New York for a season-high five touchdowns. Four of those touchdowns went to Marvin Jones. Dalton has now thrown for over 300 yards in each of his last three contests. That's how many times Dalton threw for 300 yards all of last season.
Just when you thought you’d seen the worst of the bye week blues, six more teams – Denver, Detroit, NY Giants, Arizona, San Francisco, Jacksonville — will have a day off this weekend. In that mix are names like Manning, Welker, Decker, Nicks, Fitzgerald, Kaepernick, Gore and Blackmon. Suffice to say, there will be some holes in some fantasy lineups to plug this weekend...
Ask anyone who they think will win the NFL MVP this year, and the odds are high that you will hear “Peyton Manning” in response from the majority.You may hear names such as Andrew Luck, Drew Brees, or even Jamaal Charles as well, but one name you will not hear is Andy Dalton.Dalton, who has been on a tear recently and whose Bengals are serious contenders in the AFC, is a true...
Marvin Jones usually tosses his receiver gloves into the stands on his way to the locker room, a way of letting fans share in the moment.
This pair - and this moment - was all his.
Jones caught four of Andy Dalton's career-high five touchdown passes on Sunday as the Cincinnati Bengals drubbed the New York Jets 49-9, a dominant performance that will turns heads around the NFL...
Must add Quarterbacks:
Andy Dalton: Dalton is owned in only 43.5% of ESPN leagues, and he also ranks as the 11th quarterback, 10th among active quarterbacks. A top 10 quarterback should definitely be owned in at least more than 90% of leagues, this is bargain shopping folks. Last three weeks for Dalton, (24 points, 26 points and 31 points) makes him the highest scoring Quarterback...
Andy Dalton and the 6-2 Cincinnati Bengals travel to Sun Life Stadium to take on Ryan Tannehill and the 3-4 Miami Dolphins on "Thursday Night...
While the New York Jets were getting crushed by the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, it was Antonio Cromartie’s wife who took things into her own hands during the game — well, at least into her thumbs via Twitter. Terricka Cason, “Lady Cro” on Twitter (@iluvTERRICKA) tweeted about Andy Dalton’s big game: “Dalton making this s--- look like pop warner” as she gave a running...
In the latest installment of Thursday Night Football the Cincinnati Bengals(6-2) head to south Florida to play the Miami Dolphins(3-4). Given the poor level of football displayed in the Thursday night games so far this season it’s easy to believe that viewers are in for another trick.
Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton has been a treat lately by throwing for 11 touchdowns in the last...
Coming off a huge win over the New York Jets, the Cincinnati Bengals head to Miami this week in a Thursday night prime time game that will see the Bengals play against their final opponent in the AFC East, The Miami Dolphins.Both teams are heading into this game with a short week behind them, but unlike the Bengals, the Dolphins suffered a terrible loss on the road to the New England...
The natives might be getting a little restless. The Dolphins seem to appear in a free fall and there is no net to prevent further damage to their image as an up and coming team.How could you believe a team that is 3-4 and has dropped the last four contests could be anything but in danger at this moment?And now, on the Thursday night stage, the Dolphins must avoid another second half...
The Jets defense was pretty bad yesterday. They lost by 40 points to the Bengals and made Andy Dalton look like Dan Marino out there letting him throw for 5 TD passes. One players wife was not pleased at all. Terricka Cason, who is Antonio Cromartie’s wife. Check out what she had to say:
“Lady Cro” wasn’t exactly wrong though. The whole team was pretty bad yesterday. She...
Cincinnati Bengals (-2.5) at Miami Dolphins – Thursday NightLast week the Old Man had to pick up a new fantasy football QB because his two regulars were both lost to injury. Andy Dalton, I love you man! Five TD passes against a very good New York Jets defense. This week they visit the Dolphins who, like Austin Powers, have lost their mojo. It’s a short week and that typically...
One game remains in week eight of the NFL regular season. This evening the Seattle Seahawks will visit the St. Louis Rams. It is a historic sports night as for the first time in history, the same city will be hosting a Monday Night Football game as well as a World Series game. Rightfully so, most in St. Louis will be paying attention to the World Series game. The Seahawks are giving...