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Ravens can’t recover from Bengals’ dominant 1st half

14 September 2018

It will mark Baltimore's first real test of the season.

Dalton was an efficient 21-for-28 passing for 243 yards and two TD passes - one of them to second-year pro John Ross, who missed virtually all of 2017 with knee and shoulder injuries.

And when the Bengals returned to Cincinnati after a second straight losing season, owner Mike Brown made a decision to give Lewis a two-year extension based in part upon the Bengals' 31-27 win that day.

Dixon has had a tough time staying on the field for the Ravens as he has missed 20-of-33 games in his National Football League career and can add at least another 8 games to that list, as he won't be eligible to come off I.R. until Week 11 at the very earliest against the Bengals.

The Bengals sprinted to an early lead Thursday night at home against the Ravens and held on to win, 34-23.

Green, the Cincinnati Bengals' star, put on a show for the "Thursday Night Football" fans tuning in. Previous year in the season opener at Cincinnati, the Ravens picked off Dalton four times, matching his career high, and gave Cincinnati its first opening shutout in club history 20-0.

But those who wanted to see Lewis gone seem to forget how bad things were before he arrived in 2003. And with over 20 fantasy points in the first half alone, Dalton and the Bengals offense weren't the only people who benefited greatly from Green's outburst of offensive production. But in order to lose in the opening round of the playoffs in five straight seasons between 2011 and 2015, the Bengals had to reach the playoffs in five straight seasons.

The Ravens climbed back to within 28-23 in the fourth quarter. The ensuing two-point conversion failed, leaving Baltimore down by five. He also fumbled with 2:42 to go - Shawn Williams stripped the ball from behind - setting up a field goal by Randy Bullock that closed it out. The game can be watched on NFL Network and kicks off from Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati at 7:20 P.M.

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Dalton and Green are the mainstays of the offense. Young linebackers Hardy Nickerson and Jordan Evans appeared to mostly fare fine with starting middle linebacker Preston Brown out because of an injury and Vontaze Burfict sitting out due to a suspension.

But the Bengals could do nothing in the pass game as the Ravens backed off the blitz and dropped seven after getting shredded in the first half with running back Mixon (knee) on the bench.

"I don't know, man, no clue", Green said when asked why he shines so bright against Baltimore.

The Bengals will have to find a way to make up for the absence of a pair of key linebackers.

The Steelers have won three of the last four AFC North titles. Running back Joe Mixon was outstanding in the Bengals 34-23 win last week and gives the Bengals a diversified attack that the Ravens simply don't have.

A reporter asking Monday about last year's game couldn't even get the whole question out before Ravens coach John Harbaugh interjected, "Thanks for the reminder". All seemed well when the Ravens demolished the Buffalo Bills, 47-3, Sunday in Baltimore to begin the season. That was key. Andy directed the offense, we went in and out of different tempo styles and tried to keep them back on their heels.

Much remains to play out.

Why will the Bengals win? But for now, it's enough that the Bengals are signaling that they are contenders again.

Ravens can’t recover from Bengals’ dominant 1st half