TDBH: Bengals defense pulls rank in first Marvin shutout

Posted Nov 25, 2017

This Day in Bengals History - November 26, 2006

CLEVELAND - Marvin Lewis arrived as head coach with game balls from three shutouts his Ravens defense authored over the Bengals and now he has his first one as a head coach after today’s 30-0 victory over the Browns.  The Bengals defense that comes into the game ranked dead last in the NFL leaves with its first shutout since Dec. 3, 1989 in, of all places, Cleveland. After allowing the third-most yards in team history last week against New Orleans (595), the Bengals hold the Browns to just 203 total yards, 51 on the ground, and just nine first downs, all season lows. "Maybe we'll move up now, huh?" says strong safety Kevin Kaesviharn, who contributes two of the defense's four interceptions and one of their four sacks. "I don't think we listened to all that stuff. We focused pretty well this week and just wanted to play a good game."  In the second half alone cornerback Tory James ends two straight series with interceptions of Charlie Frye (James's first picks in two months), linebacker Caleb Miller and Kaesviharn sack Frye on consecutive snaps, and free safety Madieu Williams forces a fumble by wide receiver Dennis Northcutt that is recovered by defensive end Justin Smith.

"That's for you pen jockeys," says Smith of the buzz about the No. 32 ranking. "I don't think the guys could care less ... it really doesn't matter. It's something we knew we were capable of. If we had said we were going to do it last week, everybody would be laughing.” No one is laughing about Kaesviharn, in his sixth season undrafted out of South Dakota’s Augustana. The return of Dexter Jackson allows Kaesviharn to go back to his strength as a safety on passing downs and his two interceptions give him six for the season and a share of the NFL lead. Playing every down last week, Kaesviharn comes up with a huge end-zone interception against Saints quarterback Drew Brees at the end of the half. Today he ends the half with another one to protect the Bengals’ 17-0 half-time lead on his way to have the most picks by a Bengals safety since Pro Bowler David Fulcher had eight in that last shut-out season of 1989. "He's unbelievable right now," Jackson says. "That's what makes this team. When we have guys like that. Just step in and play right away and do a great job of it.

Wide receiver Chad Johnson has seven catches for 123 yards, giving him his first three straight 100-yard days since 2002. He finishes within 40 yards of Charlie Hennigan's 45-year-old NFL record for the most yards in three straight games and takes the second most all time.  "What record?" asks Johnson. Then asked about his 573 yards over the last three games that are the most since the 1970 merger, Johnson says, "Thank you Carson." When Anthony Wright comes in to mop up with 7:15 left in the game, quarterback Carson Palmer leaves  with his third straight game of a passer rating of at least 120. He rings up a 120.7 today on 25 of 32 passing for 275 yards, three touchdowns and an interception.


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