INDIANAPOLIS — Disaster appeared to be averted Thursday night in the most meaningless game of the year when Bengals quarterback
But as the Colts took a 14-13 halftime lead, head coach Marvin Lewis said Dalton is fine for the Sept. 10 regular-season opener in Baltimore and would have returned Thursday if it had been a regular-season game.
“I’m good, no problem at all. I just took a hit on the arm, and my hand got feeling a little numb, sort of like getting hit on your funny bone," Dalton said. "But it’s fine now. There was just no point in taking any more snaps in this particular game.”
The Colts came from behind to take a 20-16 lead with 6:54 left in the game when Colts No. 3 quarterback Chandler Harnish hit tight end Dominique Jones on a 42-yard touchdown pass that was made possible by missed tackles from rookie cornerback
The Bengals had one last chance for a go-ahead score but No. 3 quarterback
The Bengals backups took a 10-0 lead on the Colts with 11:02 left in the first half at Lucas Oil Stadium on quarterback
And the Bengals took a 16-14 lead with 8:11 left in the third quarter on
Harnisch picked on the backup DBs with a 32-yard pass that set up the first touchdown and Bengals rookie cornerback
The Bengals cut the lead to 14-13 when running back
Before he got hurt Dalton led a sharp drive in which he hit three of four passes for 26 yards: A 14-yard catch-and-run to wide receiver
Dalton got drilled on his fourth pass and the ball fluttered out. He started to limp off the field, but was told by the sideline to get on the ground to stop the clock and he went down like a sack of potatoes.
He flexed his right hand for the doctors and then went to the bench where he was seen talking to his teammates and not going to the locker room. But he was done for the night and Gradkowski finished off a drive that resulted in Nugent's 37-yard field goal that gave the Bengals a 3-0 lead with 8:09 left in the first quarter.
The running game perked up with 27 yards on three carries for running back
That was it for the first group with everybody leaving for the second series but rookie center
It was also a short night for the first team defense, too.
The Bengals survived an illegal contact call on cornerback
Gradkowski hooked up with Jones for the second straight game, giving the fifth-rounder from Cal a team-leading six catches for 121 yards as his superb preseason continued. Moments before he beat cornerback Josh Gordy and dropped pass in the end zone. This time Jones ran outside, Gordy got turned around inside and Jones had a clear shot for the catch.
It was a nice drive for the rookie receivers. On fourth-and-one, Sanu made a leaping catch on the sideline, snatching it away from cornerback D.J. Johnson to keep the drive going. Jones had 30 yards at the half on three catches before returning a punt 15 yards in the fourth quarter. And Sanu had his biggest game of the preason when he made his eighth catch for 80 yards with four and a hallf minutes left.
It was also a good night for rookie middle linebacker
Rookie running back
Whalen, locked in a roster fight, put on a good show for Luck, his quarterback at Stanford. With Zac Robinson hitting 10 of his first 11 passes for 87 yards, Whalen had four catches for 41 yards in the third quarter.
The Bengals rotated their offensive line throughout the night with Anthony Colllins and
The Colts looked to salt it away when they recovered a fumbled snap at the Bengals 19 with 6:50 left in the game after center
PREGAME NOTES: All signs are pointing to Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis playing Thursday night's preseason finale pretty cautiously with the regular-season opener in Baltimore 12 days away.
Quarterback Andy Dalton says he'll play only one series and it's believed that such inactive players as middle linebacker
Thursday's inactive list: Cornerbacks