TDBH: Dalton, Cam blaze to 37-37 stalemate

Posted Oct 11, 2017

This Day in Bengals History - October 12, 2014

Today’s ending at Paul Brown Stadium is so stunning, so maddening, so draining, so downright odd, it leaves the Bengals confused with a 37-37 tie that should have been a win, feels like a loss, and ends the franchise’s longest home winning streak with 11 at the feet of Panthers quarterback Cam Newton. At 3-1-1 they are still in first in the AFC North but unhappy after one of the most dramatic games in Bengals history. “Kind of like a freaking soccer team,” says defensive tackle Domata Peko. “We’re in The Premier League.” So fittingly kicker Mike Nugent is the symbol of the very strange day. Nugent field goals give the Bengals the lead with 2:11 left in regulation and 8:35 left in OT. Fine work on any other day and work that would have given the Bengals a victory in 2011, the last year before they changed the rule to give each team a chance to get the ball in overtime. But all Nugent secures when he misses a 36-yarder at the OT gun is the record for most points in an NFL overtime game that ends in a tie. And it is just the second overtime game to end in a tie after both teams score points in the extra period since the 2012 rule change.

It is wild. The Bengals generate their most offense in seven years. Rookie running back Jeremy Hill serenades the crowd with a rendition of the Ickey Shuffle when his three-yard TD run ties it at 31 with 4:32 left in regulation. It is set up by the longest return of cornerback Adam Jones’ star-studded special teams career when he wills a 97-yarder on the kickoff after Carolina takes a 31-24 lead. With A.J. Green missing just his second NFL game with an injured big toe, wide receiver Mohamed Sanu racks up 10 catches for 120 yards. Brandon Tate catches his first touchdown pass in two years.  Rookie wide receiver James Wright’s first NFL catch puts Nugent in position for the winner. Running back Giovani Bernard has a career day with 118 yards, 89 of them coming from the Bengals’ second longest run ever from scrimmage.

“It’s weird. It’s a weird feeling,’ says Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton, who somehow fails to get his 12th winning drive despite generating 20 points in the second half and overtime while completing a remarkable 76 percent of 44 passes. “You didn’t win, but you didn’t lose, either.” Newton, his 2011 draft mate, rushes for 107 yards and passes for two touchdowns while Dalton counters with 323 yards and two touchdowns and hits six different receivers for at least four catches. “You always want to get the W, but it wasn’t a loss. It’s kind of mixed emotions. But you want to get that W every time,” Peko says. Right tackle Andre Smith decides he has to go to a higher being to sort it all out. “This is my first-ever tie, so I really don’t know,” Smith says. “I’m pretty much looking forward to Marvin (Lewis) telling us about it tomorrow.”

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