Bengals lose to Texans 19-13, extend futility

Associated Press  |  Last updated January 05, 2013
Couldn't stop Arian Foster. Couldn't make that one big play when it was right at their fingertips. And, in an ending so sickeningly familiar, the Bengals couldn't break one of the NFL's longest streaks of playoff futility. Plenty of blame to go around for this one. Andy Dalton overthrew an open A.J. Green in the end zone in the closing minutes, and the Houston Texans held on for a 19-13 victory Saturday in a wild-card rematch from last season. With its second straight postseason loss in Houston, the Bengals extended one of the NFL's longest playoff droughts. They haven't won a playoff game since the 1990 season, a 22-year stretch that equals the seventh-longest in league history, according to STATS LLC. ''It hurts when you lose, particularly when you lose in the playoffs,'' coach Marvin Lewis said. Nobody knows that exquisite pain more than the Bengals. Their postseason streak is the longest current one in the league. What hurt most? That they came up inches short this time. Despite being outplayed all game, they had one final shot at the end. They got the ball back at their 20-yard line with 6:15 left, and Dalton had his chance for a memorable comeback in his hometown. He's used to playing at Reliant Stadium - he grew up in suburban Katy and had high school games there - and now had a chance for an 80-yard drive that would get the Bengals the first playoff road win in their history. ''I was telling everybody we're going to drive down, going to win this game,'' Dalton said. ''Everybody felt that.'' They had their chance. Green got behind the coverage on a double move and Dalton saw him running free. He overthrew him on third-and-11 from the Houston 36-yard line with 2:57 to go, sailing his pass too deep into the end zone. ''I just threw it a little too far,'' Dalton said. ''That's a play that if we make it, obviously the game's a lot different.'' Green dived and stretched as far as he could but couldn't even get his fingertips on the ball. ''Inches away,'' offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth said. ''We had A.J. on that one play. Inches away.'' Dalton threw a quick pass to Marvin Jones on fourth down, but he was tackled 3 yards shy of the first down. The Texans then ran out the clock. And the postseason misery goes on. Since their last playoff win, the Bengals have been through five coaches, had 21 different quarterbacks throw a pass, and lost all four of their first-round chances. Their last playoff win came against a team that no longer exists, at a stadium that no longer stands. They beat the Houston Oilers 41-14 at Riverfront Stadium in a first-round game in January 1991. This represented their best chance to break through. They'd won seven of eight to close the season, matching the best finish in franchise history. They were playing in the same place where the lost 31-10 in the opening round last year, giving them some familiarity. In the end, it didn't matter for much. Houston's Matt Schaub gave the Bengals a chance to stay in a lopsided game by making one bad mistake. His sideline pass was intercepted by Leon Hall and returned for a 21-yard touchdown, the cornerback's second score in three games. ''It was never easy,'' Schaub said. ''Cincinnati is a great team. I made a turnover and gave them points. We just had to rally around each other and we did that.'' Given how much the Texans dominated, the Bengals were fortunate to be so close. Dalton had a horrid time. He was 4 of 10 for 3 yards in the first half. With J.J. Watt's sack added in, the Bengals had minus-6 yards passing and only 53 yards overall. ''I think it was a full defensive effort,'' Watt said. ''Everybody was flying around, everybody was having fun. We got off the field on third down. That was a big key for us.'' Dalton was a rookie last season when he threw three interceptions in the playoff loss. He had a bad homecoming again, going 14 of 30 for 127 yards with two sacks and an interception. The back-to-back playoff showings will raise questions about the second-round draft pick, who faded down the stretch. Dalton threw for four touchdowns and six interceptions in the last six games, which the Bengals won with defense. The defense scored three touchdowns in the last three games, while the offense managed only one. ''The offense didn't play as well as it could have,'' Dalton said. ''You can always look back and say, `What if?''' --- Online: http://pro32.ap.org/poll and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: D'Angelo Russell hit in groin by LeBron pass

Kobe Bryant has great response to Tyronn Lue story

Report: St. Louis Blues no longer interested in Jonathan Drouin

Doc Rivers: Warriors have 'swagger' of defending champion

Damian Lillard added as a finalist for 2016 U.S. Olympic Team

Celtics legend Paul Pierce prepares for what ‘could be’ his last game in Boston

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Free-agent WR Josh Morgan accidentally shot himself, charged with crime

Jon Beason retires after nine NFL seasons

Brewers Association sends Peyton Manning case of craft beer

Report: Police recommend charges against LeSean McCoy

Heat interested in Kings’ 3-point specialist Omri Casspi

Rick Pitino thinks Louisville should be fined $10 million for scandal

Kevin McHale: James Harden being out of shape hurt Rockets early

WATCH: Kevin Love re-injures left shoulder

Johnny Manziel’s grandpa on ex-girlfriend: ‘The girl has her problems’

Andy Dalton reunited with missing luggage thanks to social media

Chad ‘Ochocinco’ Johnson used to soak his ankles in urine

Why Tom Thibodeau needs to be in New York

Defensemen in high demand as NHL trade deadline looms

Thank you Daniel Bryan

The timeless greatness of Jaromir Jagr

Security guard indicted for assaulting University of Houston football fan

The LeBron-Kobe rivalry and Finals matchup that never was

Mario Williams recognizes Bills may release him

Terrell Owens says Cris Carter 'begged his way' into HOF

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Thank you Daniel Bryan

The timeless greatness of Jaromir Jagr

The NCAAB power rankings

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Eli doesn't look thrilled as Peyton wins Super Bowl

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker