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Bengals want to take advantage of “chance of a lifetime”

Cincinnati Bengals' Adams Jones (24) celebrates his teams 23-16 win over the Arizona Cardinals in their NFL football game Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, Reuters

There are a lot of great stories heading into this final Sunday of football of the regular season.

One of the very best stories — the 2011 Bengals — has been a little lost in the shuffle.

A lot of power rankings had the Bengals dead last at No. 32 before the year. In Vegas, the over/under of their win total was 5.5.

The talk in the preseason was about who wasn’t there: Carson Palmer, Johnathan Joseph, and Chad Ochocinco. Rookie Andy Dalton was expected to be the most overmatched starting quarterback in the league.

16 weeks later, the Bengals just need one more win (against the Ravens) to make the playoffs.

“Let it all hang out. I can’t say we’re treating it like any other week. This is the chance of a lifetime,” safety Chris Crocker told Geoff Hobson of Bengals.com. “What better reason to play the last week of season? Let it all hang loose. It’s going to be a packed house. They’re going for a first-round bye. They’re going to give us their best.”

Dalton has been a revelation, wise beyond his years. A.J. Green can be one of the best five receivers in football sooner than later. Still, the reason for the Bengals’ success is one we re-learn every year. When you are looking for a surprise team, look to the line play.

Cincinnati’s veteran offensive line has a great mix of continuity and talent. Their defensive line is young, aggressive, and very deep.

If they can just win one more game, this Bengals story will get a whole lot better.

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75 Responses to “Bengals want to take advantage of “chance of a lifetime””
  1. britishraven says: Dec 30, 2011 6:04 PM

    Flacco just needs to keep it together this week and we’ll be set for the SB thanks to homefield advantage.

    I’m sure I speak for all other Ravens fans when I say “just give the ball to Ray Rice”. If he gets 25+ touches we’ll win the game, if it’s on Flacco – anything could happen, most likely bad things.

  2. throwmetheidol says: Dec 30, 2011 6:06 PM

    I been a Bengals fan since I was a little kid. I seen more downs than ups. But I never been more proud of a team. Than this one. Win or loose Sunday I will still love my Bengals.

  3. bensstinkyfingers says: Dec 30, 2011 6:06 PM

    Great Turnaround for the Bengals, This Browns fan will be Rooting for them To make it to the playoffs and advance farther than both Pittspuke and the Ratbirds.

  4. ballsooharduniversity says: Dec 30, 2011 6:08 PM

    im a ravens fan and im admitting to being worried an enormous amount about this game. we are playing bad on the road, bengals are motivated, and injuries are a major concern. gonna be tough but we have finished the regular season strong in past years on harbs so hopefully this is another…

  5. ampking101 says: Dec 30, 2011 6:08 PM

    I honestly gotta say I’m happy for the Bengals, I know how difficult it can be to be in a seemingly “rebuilding year” I also know how great it feels to have a breakout year in that rebuilding faze when you have all but counted them out. Still wish you guys would have taken the trade for AJ in the draft but glad to see him somewhere he is doing well.

    Sincerly – A Falcon Fan

  6. clavette says: Dec 30, 2011 6:10 PM

    AJ green is the best young reciever in the NFL.

    next year instead of saying theres 3 recievers that stand out above all the other great recievers, we will be saying theres 4 – calvin johnson, larry fitzgerald, andre johnson, and AJ green.

    i just hope andre comes back 100%

  7. pskotte says: Dec 30, 2011 6:10 PM

    These guys are overdue for some good times. No matter who your team is, you gotta feel a little warmth for the long-term underdog that finally turns it around. Great story – to be continued.

  8. t8ertot says: Dec 30, 2011 6:11 PM

    Beat the Ratbirds! Seeing that they’re going to the playoffs regardless, they should just let us win lol. Kidding ofcourse, that won’t happen. But I like our chances.

    We have their number throughout the years. And our fans are actually showing up for this one. I know steeler fans got our back.

    WHO DEY!!!!!

  9. raylewisandhisteeth says: Dec 30, 2011 6:11 PM

    Dirty birds are going down. Have fun as the #5 seed….

  10. rozz513 says: Dec 30, 2011 6:15 PM

    Who Dat… Naw, Who Dey!!!!!

  11. worldwidebleater says: Dec 30, 2011 6:15 PM

    Lucky for the league that the Bengals won’t have any home playoff games. Mike Brown would be offering free soup just to get hobos into the stadium.

  12. test2402 says: Dec 30, 2011 6:15 PM

    These guys couldn’t hold up a playoff Tim Tebow.

  13. patriotsadw says: Dec 30, 2011 6:17 PM

    They will because the gayvens will play like the gayvens on the road and blow it.

  14. benwantsababyruth says: Dec 30, 2011 6:19 PM

    “It’s going to be a packed house.”

    A rare sell out in Cincinnati.

  15. stevepea says: Dec 30, 2011 6:21 PM

    I’m a Ravens fan but also a football fan.
    I will be rooting for the Ravens but I would also like to see the Bengals get into the playoffs.
    If the Ravens can’t step up then I think the Bengals would be the most exciting team to watch make a run for itin the AFC with a good defense and a young offense

  16. realmendontletothermenleaponthem says: Dec 30, 2011 6:22 PM

    I would root for these guys, but the last time I went to Cincy, I was mugged, my dog was raped, and my car was stolen…and those were the highlights. But then again, it’s better than Detroit.

  17. scrapphoria says: Dec 30, 2011 6:25 PM

    Called the Bengals’ ticket line today to check on getting my season tickets back (I like many, did not renew last year). The Bengals started taking new season ticket orders today. The guy I spoke to said that they sold thousands of new season tickets just today. The people are speaking….

  18. ahostiletakeover says: Dec 30, 2011 6:27 PM

    As a Ravens fan, I have a lot of respect for this team. I knew the AFC North was getting an easy schedule this year which is precisely why before the season I figured the Ravens and Steelers would go at worst 12-4 and the Bengals and Browns would both be around .500 (so much for the Browns prediction). I also felt Dalton and Newton would be the best QBs outta this class and we all know Green is already a beast. A lot of very good, young talent players on defense too, especially that front four with Peko, Atkins, Dunlap, and Johnson. It is not going to be an easy game for either team and I’m probably not going to be surprised by the outcome either way.

    All that said, am I the only one who finds it amusing that Crocker called this the chance of a lifetime, maybe because he knows old Marvin is 0-2 in the playoffs for his career in Cincy and its been since what, the early 80′s when the Bengals last won a playoff game. Yup, the chance of a lifetime because you never know when Mike Brown is gonna field a team that can be consistent. I feel for Bengals fans and that sorry owner they have to put up with…

  19. scrapphoria says: Dec 30, 2011 6:28 PM

    In the nine years that Marvin Lewis has been head coach – only 3 losing seasons and two AFC North Championships. In that same period, the Browns have had 8 losing seasons, no division titles, and no playoffs. But the Bengal fans are call long suffering. What about Clown fans?

  20. packmanfan says: Dec 30, 2011 6:30 PM

    Meh. There is a reason why they are being overlooked. It’s because they suck.
    Oh well, at least they have that flip into the end zone by that one Bengal guy.

  21. ud1hens says: Dec 30, 2011 6:35 PM

    I think they are 1-6 vs teams over .500 this season. This is a great opportunity for both the Ravens and Bengals. First the 20 points wins?

  22. mightyleemoon says: Dec 30, 2011 6:36 PM

    Dalton is the man.

  23. nflfollower says: Dec 30, 2011 6:53 PM

    I think I speak for most Lions fans when I say we’re pulling for you Cincy. From one organization that’s had some tough times to another—good luck!

  24. thefiesty1 says: Dec 30, 2011 6:53 PM

    Just think what Cleveland could have done if they’d moved up and taken A J Green. It only takes a few players and Colt could of had them in the playoffs.

  25. emmac13 says: Dec 30, 2011 6:59 PM

    Sam Wyche is a turd. But this week I hope the Bengals beat STDmore.

  26. peytonwantsaflag says: Dec 30, 2011 7:01 PM

    “Meh. There is a reason why they are being overlooked. It’s because they suck.
    Oh well, at least they have that flip into the end zone by that one Bengal guy.”
    —————————————————————

    One of the great things about the internet is the anonymity right packmanfan? While your handle indicates you like the Packers I’ve yet to meet, or read, a packer fan that was such a tool – I must assume then you are most likely a Stealer fan and like most of them are fond of the fudgepacks.

  27. bengals3285 says: Dec 30, 2011 7:02 PM

    Man I love all the Cincy haters, they have no reason to hate but they all think they have something funny to say. Marvin Lewis is a hell of a coach, the players are all playing lights out, Clements, Atkins, Peko, and Crocker are having a great season on defense, and you couldn’t ask more from a young offense. Thanks for always having something to say though, it gives us something to rub everyone’s faces when they prove you wrong. 31-20 bengals win this week.

  28. descendency says: Dec 30, 2011 7:06 PM

    They need to beat a good team this year. When you look at their wins, they don’t have a single victory against any playoff teams.

    Wins: Browns (twice), Bills, Jags, Colts, Seahawks, Titans*, Rams, Cardinals

    *makes playoffs if they win, the Bengals lose, and some other stuff happens.

    This team is just like the Cincinnati Reds in 09. If they want to be better than that, they need to win at home against Baltimore this Sunday.

  29. sbs9101314304043 says: Dec 30, 2011 7:09 PM

    The Ginga Ninja outplays Flacco and the Bengals go into the playoffs.

  30. biglebronski says: Dec 30, 2011 7:18 PM

    I don’t know about “chance of a lifetime,” but “chance of a decade” would surely be accurate.

  31. sixburghrules says: Dec 30, 2011 7:24 PM

    britishraven says: Dec 30, 2011 6:04 PM

    Flacco just needs to keep it together this week and we’ll be set for the SB thanks to homefield advantage.
    ———————————————–
    Till you got to go on the road! Ravens will not NOT beat the Steelers a 3rd time (playoffs are a new season) at Heinz Field or at your cheap ass Bank stadium! I think the Ravens go down to a decent Bungles team!

  32. sixburghrules says: Dec 30, 2011 7:30 PM

    ahostiletakeover says: Dec 30, 2011 6:27 PM
    ————————————–

    Ravens & Steelers are perennial Top Dawgs! The Bengals are lurking though!

  33. t8ertot says: Dec 30, 2011 7:34 PM

    “Just think what Cleveland could have done if they’d moved up and taken A J Green. It only takes a few players and Colt could of had them in the playoffs.”

    Lol what are you smoking? It would take a lot more than Green to get the Browns to the playoffs.

  34. vex24 says: Dec 30, 2011 7:37 PM

    I predict that this will be the Game of the Season. Showtime!
    Welcome to the Jungle, for it has risen!

  35. bungalsfan101 says: Dec 30, 2011 7:57 PM

    thanks for the props ppl but you all were damning us at the begining of the season. i knew dalton was going to do good for us concidering he beat big schools in collage when he was at a small school. im excited for sunday to come so i can watch the bengals do what they do. and raisen fans welcome to the jungle cause we are going to dominate this game

  36. steelers4life says: Dec 30, 2011 7:58 PM

    I never thought I’d say this.

    Let’s go Bengals!!

  37. skinsrock says: Dec 30, 2011 8:03 PM

    Maybe the Steelers will make it easy & just LOSE!

  38. goforthanddie says: Dec 30, 2011 8:12 PM

    If they can just win one more game, this Bengals story will get a whole lot better.
    _________________________________

    If they can just get a real owner, this Bengals story will get a whole lot better.

  39. therealsmiley says: Dec 30, 2011 8:35 PM

    Rooting for ya’ Bengals! Beat those Browns…I mean Ratbirds! Hail!!

  40. demoderbydoug says: Dec 30, 2011 8:37 PM

    It’s one thing to be a hater but some of these haters need to get their facts straight. People can talk trash about Cincy all they want but if your going to try and use facts make sure their right otherwise you sound like a politician at election time. WHO DEY!!!

  41. nationalmediacansuckit says: Dec 30, 2011 8:38 PM

    Ravens fans are so funny. They are turds of the NFL right along with Eagles fans. These two fans dominate the message boards on “we took over the stadium” and “we are real fans”‘blah blah. You guys are an expansion team that has had some success, but you Raven fans act as if you are in the from office making personnel decisions. Get a life already. I couldn’t care less about the Steelers or Ravens, but you are and will always be the stepchild(you’re family but not really) of the AFC North. You have zero tradition over the other three teams in the division. By the way, it’s not a rivalry when the Steelers dominate you. Keep trying though.

  42. jeepin08 says: Dec 30, 2011 8:44 PM

    Flacco has the uncanny ability to make mediocre defenses look all pro. I see no differance with this match up. Flacco will go in there and fumble in between throwing int’s. to ruin yet another season for Baltimore. He was a backup QB in college for a reason.

  43. jeepin08 says: Dec 30, 2011 8:52 PM

    And to all you steeler schlongs. Last week it was go Browns for you. This week it’s go bengals with your fanbase. Truly sickening. You people really need to get out of the basement and get a real life.

  44. chief4ever says: Dec 30, 2011 8:55 PM

    Not a Bengals fan but I’d like to see them win to keep the Raiders and Jets out, of course that would mean the Broncos would need to win as well unless the Raiders and Jets lose.

  45. 6ball says: Dec 30, 2011 8:55 PM

    .

    A Steelers fan called me after the first Pitt -Cinn game. He told me that they’re not the same old Bengals. He said that Dalton didn’t look out of place. I look forward to a competitive matchup.

    .

  46. dowhatifeellike says: Dec 30, 2011 8:58 PM

    It’s only the opportunity of a lifetime if you’re not good enough to get signed by a winner. The Ravens have made the playoffs 5 of the last 6 years.

  47. andyreidisfat says: Dec 30, 2011 9:23 PM

    Love it now bengals fans, just don’t forget not to long ago the bengals were young and on the rise. They had a year quit like this one with a strong d and good weapons and stud looking young qb. That team made the playoffs that year. They lost in the first round. They haven’t been to the playoffs since. That crappy ownership will tear this team apart in the next 3 years. Mark it down now aj green will never ever sign another contract with the bengals. I feel so bad for the fans of this horrible ownership. I have never ever seen a group do so little with so much. Who wants to bet both picks they got for Palmer are busts?

    Bengals fans should be excited about this team and the player and coaches but I still hope for their own sake they don’t reward the nfls worst owner by buying tickets. They did this same this to you folks 5 years ago, don’t forget that. Down with brown. It’s better in the long run.

  48. bebopa says: Dec 30, 2011 9:25 PM

    this is the one Ohio team that needs to be feared. The Ravens better bring their A game

  49. bleed4philly says: Dec 30, 2011 9:42 PM

    Force Donovan Flacco to beat you, and he won’t. He struggles against 4-3 defenses, just like Peyton Manning and Drew Brees struggle against 3-4 defenses (decent ones)

  50. bigcid10 says: Dec 30, 2011 9:45 PM

    I’m rootin for the Bengals on this one
    If cinci wins steelers get 1st seed
    and ravens drop to 5

  51. phillyraider says: Dec 30, 2011 9:51 PM

    AJ green is the best young reciever in the NFL.

    next year instead of saying theres 3 recievers that stand out above all the other great recievers, we will be saying theres 4 – calvin johnson, larry fitzgerald, andre johnson, and AJ green.

    i just hope andre comes back 100%
    ———————————————————-
    add julio jones to that list he had almost exact same stats as AJ Green

    JJ 12games 50rec,883yds,6TDs,17.7
    AJ 14games 63rec,1031yds,7TDs,16.4

  52. juststeel says: Dec 30, 2011 9:55 PM

    As a lifelong Steelers fan, I look forward in the future to playing a very good Bengals team. The sky is the limit for them ( assuming they are still in Cincinnati) c’mon Bengals fans, show or go.

  53. steelcurtainn says: Dec 30, 2011 9:55 PM

    No Words to be Spoken. The Bungles win 24-17 over the Ratbirds.

  54. cereal blogger says: Dec 30, 2011 10:29 PM

    Ravens 53, Bengals 9

  55. hound32 says: Dec 30, 2011 10:31 PM

    Lifelong die hard Browns fan since 68 ..yes i will be pulling for the Bengals this Sunday ..very quietly i must add .the state of Ohio gets a sweep this weekend as we will “upset “the Steelers this Sunday on the Lakefront in more ways than one .

    It would have taken a helluva lot more than just drafting AJ Green to get the Browns into the play offs this year . our HC / Very very offensive coordinator is clueless for starters . maybe one day they get it right . toughest division in all of pro football is the AFC North .

  56. lennylyles says: Dec 30, 2011 10:42 PM

    No traditon what the f… are you talking about. Check your history . The city of Baltimore helped put the NFL on the map. The city owns 4 NFL championships. Walk in Ravens stadium and you touch the foot of Johnny Unitas for good luck.

    Ravens fans are so funny. They are turds of the NFL right along with Eagles fans. These two fans dominate the message boards on “we took over the stadium” and “we are real fans”‘blah blah. You guys are an expansion team that has had some success, but you Raven fans act as if you are in the from office making personnel decisions. Get a life already. I couldn’t care less about the Steelers or Ravens, but you are and will always be the stepchild(you’re family but not really) of the AFC North. You have zero tradition over the other three teams in the division. By the way, it’s not a rivalry when the Steelers dominate you. Keep trying though.

  57. huejackson says: Dec 30, 2011 10:45 PM

    Outside of Steelers and Ravens this team had a easy schedule. They are really not that good and they will lose against the Ravens.. The Raiders or Broncos are taking that Wild Card spot..
    I think it will be the broncos. Just because I know the Jets will win and I know Titans will lose and Bengals and ofcourse the Raiders will win..Orton will rip apart Tebow’s Broncos.
    Bengals and Broncos are the 2 fluke teams..
    I keep telling you people BELIEVE….
    Believe in the Raiders, They will shock the world
    and when they do all the Raider Hater media outlets like this very website and ESPN will not even mention it…Instead of showing Super Bowl highlights when the Raiders win it ESPN will show PBA Bowling

  58. wtf2812 says: Dec 30, 2011 11:00 PM

    worldwidebleater says:

    Lucky for the league that the Bengals won’t have any home playoff games. Mike Brown would be offering free soup just to get hobos into the stadium.

    *****

    Hands down one of the funniest posts I’ve EVER come across on this site. I can’t quit laughing!!!

  59. wtf2812 says: Dec 30, 2011 11:11 PM

    And when you guys talk about the great young receivers, don’t forget about the Steelers Mike Wallace and Antonio “Pro Bowl” Brown. they are already stars.

  60. bmoreballbuster says: Dec 30, 2011 11:18 PM

    Anyway you slice it, the Blackbirds have more on the line in this match-up. A bye and a 1st game homefield advantage. The Bungles are one and done at best. I’ll take the better team in this match-up and hands down the Ravens are superior.

  61. indycolt45 says: Dec 30, 2011 11:48 PM

    Dalton’s like 23. If being one game away from making the playoffs is a chance of a lifetime, Bengals fans are in for a long 60 years.

  62. firegoodell says: Dec 30, 2011 11:52 PM

    hound32 says:
    Dec 30, 2011 10:31 PM
    Lifelong die hard Browns fan since 68 ..yes i will be pulling for the Bengals this Sunday ..very quietly i must add .the state of Ohio gets a sweep this weekend as we will “upset “the Steelers this Sunday on the Lakefront in more ways than one .

    It would have taken a helluva lot more than just drafting AJ Green to get the Browns into the play offs this year . our HC / Very very offensive coordinator is clueless for starters . maybe one day they get it right . toughest division in all of pro football is the AFC North .

    You lost any and all credibility with the comment about the Clowns upsetting the Steelers and not only that but putting “upset” in quotation marks – if the Browns do win and that is a A HUGE IF – it would be an upset so there is no reason to put it in quotation marks….watch and see the Browns will lay down and take a complete ass whoopin’ from the Steelers.

  63. barklikeadog says: Dec 31, 2011 12:25 AM

    Cincinnati BOGO’s!

  64. djsammmyskillz says: Dec 31, 2011 12:46 AM

    Bungles who? Its the freakin cincinnasty BENGALS baby

  65. bensstinkyfingers says: Dec 31, 2011 12:53 AM

    Cleveland, its time to lock up your women and pets, Bloated Ben, and James “lights out” Harrison are coming to town. There was a sighting of these scoundrels in downtown Cleveland 45 minutes ago, at the House of Blues, apparently it was co-ed / $1.00 cheap shot night.

  66. nflenthusiast says: Dec 31, 2011 1:00 AM

    Cincinnati: where the 6th seed is the chance of a lifetime.

  67. starfan79 says: Dec 31, 2011 1:16 AM

    I hope the bengals win, I’m a TCU fan and I think Flacco is over rated. I wouldn’t trust him if the game was on the line

  68. ravenator says: Dec 31, 2011 1:20 AM

    Ravens win, Cincy out, Pittsburgh on the road, Brady inactive, haters gonna hate. Ravens representing the AFC in the superbowl. Believe it.

  69. mountaindont says: Dec 31, 2011 2:47 AM

    “chance of a lifetime” How true since the Bengals have not won a playoff game for 20 years. The Bengals have become so accustomed to losing that making the playoffs brings about “chance of a lifetime” Mike Brown needs to go !

  70. patriotsadw says: Dec 31, 2011 7:03 AM

    @cereal blogger

    ———————————————————————————–

    Are you high? The ravens can’t even score 30 on a consistent basis let alone 40… 53 to much maybe 9 and bengals 53 FTW!!!

  71. reddskeletor says: Dec 31, 2011 7:05 AM

    Now, if they can only dump Mike Brown……

  72. therealsmiley says: Dec 31, 2011 7:21 AM

    Ravens have 1 Super Bowl trophy. That’s it. No more, no less. Hail!

  73. bonniebengal says: Dec 31, 2011 7:34 AM

    Marvin Lewis tends to get way too cautious in the big games. “Playing it safe” with Cedric Benson has been costly. He’s fumbled five times in the last two games. We’re just lucky we recovered three of them. Opposing defenses have his number. If Marvin just uses the strengths of the guys we have, we can win this!

  74. j0esixpack says: Dec 31, 2011 12:29 PM

    How hard the Ravens play might have a lot to do with whether the Patriots lock up the #1 seed in the earlier game

  75. marcus3321 says: Dec 31, 2011 4:14 PM

    Even though we ( the bengals) have a 9-6 record it could’ve been even better . We barely lost to San fran and Texas. We own Baltimore at home… Period. Even when our record was 4-12, (2) of those wins were against Baltimore. 27-21 bengals (Andy dalton) last min t.d to Gresham

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