With Peyton Manning still on the sideline, it seems as if their chances of actually winning a game get bleaker and bleaker. As for the Cincinnati Bengals, no one expected them to be this good with Carson Palmer still sitting at home also.
The Indianapolis Colts (0-6) went on the road to visit the Cincinnati Bengals (4-2) with three of their players not even making the trip. We know Peyton Manning is missing for the Colts, but running back Joseph Addai and left tackle Anthony Castonzo is also missing this week for. The Bengals seem to be doing good as they now hold the fifth spot in the NFL for total defense and that’s what helping them to win these games.
Cincinnati got the ball to start the game, and Cedric Benson (16 carries, 57 yards, 1 TD) did most of the carrying as they ran the ball three straight plays. The Bengals went three plays and out as the Colts defense forced them to punt it away.
The Colts got the ball as they looked to move down the field, but could not hold on to it as Dallas Clark (6 receptions, 53 yards, 1 TD) fumbled on a pass from Curtis Painter (23/34, 188 yards, 1 TD, 1 Int).
With a shorten field the Bengals took advantage as they moved the ball 44-yards on the drive. Andy Dalton (25/32, 264 yards, 1 TD) hit Jermaine Gresham (4 receptions, 23 yards) 13-yard gain then turned around and connected with Andre Caldwell (4 receptions, 32 yards) for a 14-yard gain. Dalton then dropped back and hit A.J. Green (5 receptions, 51 yards, 1 TD) with an 11-yard touchdown pass that made it a 7-0 lead.
The Colts got the ball back tried to get the running game going as they used Delone Carter on three straight plays. Painter then hit Reggie Wayne (5 receptions, 58 yards) with a 9-yard pass to keep the sticks moving. Painter later scrambled for 12-yard gain to get them into the Bengals territory. The drive then when cold after Carter lost 4-yards on a run, and was forced to punt the ball away.
The Bengals offense struggled as well on their drive as they went three and out before punting the ball away. Indy finally got their offense moving as they moved the ball 66-yards on their ensuing drive. Painter then hit Pierre Garcon (8 receptions, 52 yards) on three straight passes with one for 11-yard being the longest. Donald Brown (5 carries, 35 yards 1 TD) then had back-to-back runs to get into the endzone. Brown scored on a 18-yard run that tied the game up at seven-points apiece.
Cincinnati got the ball back with 5:56 to go in the half, and they used the entire clock to drive down the field. Dalton hit Jerome Simpson (6 receptions, 101) with an 18-yard reception to start the drive. Dalton later connected with Simpson again, but this time it was for 28-yards and a first down. The drive then began to slow down as the Bengals called two timeouts, and the second one came at .3 seconds. Mike Nugent came on and made a 20-yard field-goal to make it a 10-7 game.
Indy got the ball to start the second half, but went three and out being forced to punt the ball away. The Bengals took over and Dalton and Simpson hooked up again as he caught a 32-yard pass. Benson then finished the drive off with a 1-yard run that gave the Bengals a quick 17-7 lead to start the third quarter.
The Colts got the ball on the ensuing drive, but ended up punting it away after going three and out. After the punt the Bengals took over on their own 14-yardline and began to get the ball going as Bernard Scott (11 carries, 29 yards) opened the drive with three straight runs. Dalton then hit Brian Leonard (2 receptions, 38 yards) for a 13-yard gain. The Bengals could not move the ball anymore, and Nugent came on to kick in a 43-yarder that made it a 20-7 game.
Painter got the Colts offense moving on the next drive as they answered with a field-goal of their own. Painter and Wayne connected on a 22-yard pass, and later connected on a 13-yard pass. Garcon caught an 11-yard pass from Painter as they were now in field-goal range. The Colts tried to keep the drive going, but to no avail. They had to settle for a 46-yard Adam Vinatieri kick that made it a 20-10 game.
Cincy had not luck on their next drive as they went three and out having to punt the ball away. Painter did most of the damage through the air as Painter hit Garcon, Clark and Wayne for nice gains. Painter tried to hit Garcon on a deep pass, but the defender was called for pass interference. That put the ball on the one-yard line and Painter tried two quarterback sneaks and was stopped. The Colts finally got in when Painter hit Clark for a one-yard touchdown. The score was now 20-17 with 9:33 to go in the game.
The Colts got the ball back from the Bengals after a punt. Painter moved the ball through the air as he hit Clark with a 16-yard pass. The drive stalled after they gained 16 yards and Vinatieri came on to attept another field-goal. Vinatieri tried to make a 52-yarder, but it was blocked by Nate Clements.
The Bengals took over after the change of possession, and Dalton got them moving as Dalton hit Leonard with a 25-yard pass. The Bengals then got into field-goal position of their own, but Nugent missed the field-goal wide right.
The Colts took over and on the first play Garcon hit caught a pass from Painter, but was forced to fumble when he was hit by Reggie Nelson. Carlos Dunlap recovered the ball and ran it back 35-yards for a touchdown. The play was reviewed and upheld as the Bengals took a 27-17 lead with 2:18 to go in the game.
Painter then lost his chance to bring the Colts back as he threw an interception on the first play of the drive. Leon Hall picked off the ball for the Bengals as he sealed their victory matching their win total from last year.