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Doucet’s trip sets up Bengals in playoff position

Arizona Cardinals v Cincinnati Bengals Getty Images

Skeltonmania almost did it again. Almost.

Down 23-0 to start the fourth quarter, the Cardinals fell short 23-16 against the Bengals after another improbable fourth quarter comeback came just short.

The Cardinals were in position to tie the game with under two minutes left. On a fourth down play, receiver Early Doucet streaked open on a busted coverage into the end zone. John Skelton seemed to surprise Doucet with the location of the ball, and Doucet tripped and fell.

The ball hit the ground, and the Cardinals’ small playoff hopes ended a few minutes later when another Arizona drive came up short.

The Bengals almost gave this away after an incredible defensive effort. Going into the fourth quarter, the Cardinals didn’t even have 100 yards of offense. They hadn’t crossed midfield. Cincinnati had five sacks, ten quarterback hits, and three interceptions.

It was the type of performance that marked Cincinnati’s fast start to the season. Combined with the Jets loss, the Bengals now control their playoff fate at 9-6. Win next week, and the Bengals are in.

That’s the good news. The bad news is that Bengals play the Ravens next week.

Just the fact the Bengals are in this position is one of the stories of the year. Especially now that Skeltonmania is finally over.

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13 Responses to “Doucet’s trip sets up Bengals in playoff position”
  1. trbowman says: Dec 24, 2011 5:02 PM

    Skelton’s terrible. Did his best DA impression. Wildly inaccurate all day.

    If the Cardinals had Kolb they win….no doubt in my mind.

  2. joecb91 says: Dec 24, 2011 5:09 PM

    Kolb is a better passer, more accurate, more consistent. I think he is the better overall QB.

    Skelton is very inconsistent, turns the ball over too much, but he can be very clutch too. Something that Kolb hasn’t shown this year.

    The Cardinals recent success is more about the improved defense which was struggling badly during the first seven games. This time they just could not overcome another poor start.

  3. chocopoppy says: Dec 24, 2011 5:17 PM

    That Simpson boy showed why I picked him 4 years ago. Despite him not getting on the field for 3 years I always believed. And as for his legal troubles? I’m a redeemer.

    I’m still puzzled with the empty seats though. I brought back Marvin, pissed off Carson, and recently brought another 30% of the team ownership back into the wonderful Brown family. Not to mention being more than fair about the long-overdue county funded repairs to MY stadium. I also wrote a nice letter to the fan who said “all I want for Xmas is a GM”.

    Happy Holidays to all my fellow billionaires,

    Mike Brown

  4. weatheredfan says: Dec 24, 2011 5:24 PM

    “the Bengals now control their playoff fate” heading into Week 17.

    …just like everyone predicted in the preseason.

  5. yourhometownhero says: Dec 24, 2011 5:53 PM

    Yeah god forbid any credit is given to the Bengals for winning a game. It’s just 9 teams that have lost against the Bengals, not the Bengals have won 9 games.

  6. cordellgc says: Dec 24, 2011 6:04 PM

    if the bengals go to the playoffs and nobody is there to see it, did it really happen?

  7. quizguy66 says: Dec 24, 2011 6:10 PM

    If Detroit hangs on to win today, Bengals are in with:

    1) win or tie
    or
    2) Jets loss/tie and Broncos loss/tie
    or
    3) Jets loss/tie and Raiders loss/tie

    Who Dey!

    -QG

  8. ticalcaldwell says: Dec 24, 2011 6:53 PM

    yeah the tripped helped…but the 3 quarters of flawless D is what won the game

  9. redrifle14 says: Dec 24, 2011 7:52 PM

    This was a good game. The Bengals won it, shutting down the Cardinals not once but twice on a 2-pt conversion. If it wasn’t for Ced Benson’s 2 4th quarter fumbles, then the game would’nt even be close.

  10. cincybert says: Dec 24, 2011 11:05 PM

    Consistently PFT claims the Bengals have no chance against the Ravens, despite the facts that: Marvin Lewis owns a winning record over the Ravens in his career as Bengals coach; the Ravens have already lost to far worse teams on the road this year than the Bengals; and if not for the ridiculous “Calvin Johnson” rule overturning Gresham’s touchdown the Bengals probably would have beaten the Ravens in Baltimore. Go ahead Rosenthal, keep giving the Bengals no shot next week. You’re week 17 prediction is likely as good as your preseason forecast that had the Bengals ranked 32nd. Keep up the good work.

  11. ohiost4141 says: Dec 25, 2011 1:31 AM

    cincybert:

    you make EXCELLENT points. one more HUGE point about the first matchup….

    AJ GREEN DIDN’T EVEN PLAY.

    The Bengals match-up extremely well against Baltimore. Always have. Flacco has always struggled against Cincinnati’s D. Dalton threw for over 300 yards in his first game vs Baltimore (without Green).

    Also keeping in mind that the game is in Cincy in front of a loud crowd, I see the Bengals winning this to go to the playoffs.

  12. londonbengal says: Dec 25, 2011 7:16 PM

    Cam Newton has done a fantastic job down in Charlotte, but if Dalton takes this no-hope Bengal team into the play-offs and to 11 or more wins this season, he will have earned some serious consideration for offensive rookie of the year.

    You agree with that Panther fans ?

  13. whoplayswhere says: Dec 26, 2011 11:17 PM

    @londonbengal,

    I TOTALLY agree with you……….but Cam is the sexy pick. It gives the media a chance to talk about his Cam’s troubles in college, his dad’s scam, and how a troubled youth rallied to become Rookie of the Year in the NFL.

    Andy Dalton is just a red headed white kid who happened to play an easy schedule, had a all star rookie wideout, and maximized his potential for one year.

    Its unfortunate, but Cam is the better “story”, so we all know where it will go if its between those two.

    The question is……….if AJ Green has 140 yards and two touchdowns, with one at the buzzer to beat Baltimore next week, at what point does he enter the conversation?

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