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Cincinnati Bengals History | 1975 -



In their final season with Paul Brown as head coach, the Bengals opened with six straight wins and went on to post an 11-3 record. Their .786 winning percentage stands through 2017 as the best in franchise history, and their plus differential in yards per game (81.2, on 361.4 offensively vs. 280.2 defensively) also stands as a franchise record. The team also set a franchise record for fumble recoveries per game (1.57, on 22 total). But two of Cincinnati's losses were to AFC Central Division rival Pittsburgh, and the Steelers took the division title at 12-2, setting up their drive to the Super Bowl X championship. The Bengals qualified as the AFC Wild Card team for the playoffs, but had to play on the road at Oakland, which also had finished 11-3, and the Raiders prevailed, 31-28, withstanding a Bengals rally from a 31-14 deficit. QB Ken Anderson won the second of his four NFL passing championships, with a 93.9 rating, and he was also named Dodge NFL Man of the Year, an award reflecting both athletic and civic achievement. Attempts to revive the injury-plagued career of iconic QB Greg Cook ended on July 9, when the Bengals allowed Kansas City to claim Cook on waivers. Cook played in preseason for the Chiefs but did not reach the regular season with the club. The Bengals opened the preseason in the Hall of Fame game at Canton, Ohio, playing Washington on Aug. 2 on a day when the on-field temperature was estimated at 105, believed to be the hottest conditions ever (through 2017) for any Bengals game. Labor unrest forced the preseason to unfold under another strike threat, but it was averted just before the regular season began. The Bengals defense was strong despite the pre-training camp loss of Pro Bowl DT Mike Reid, who retired at age 26 to pursue a career in music. The last player still with the Bengals from the 1968 expansion draft, G Pat Matson, was traded to Green Bay on Sept. 10. Prior to the season, Paul Brown hired Kim Wood as the first "strength coach" in franchise history, citing the need for a more comprehensive year-round conditioning program for players. Wood would serve in the job through 2002.

Postseason Game Summary – AFC Divisional Playoff

The 1975 Bengals posted the best regular-season winning percentage in franchise history (.786), and they led the NFL in passing yards. But their 11-3 record earned them only a Wild Card spot behind 12-2 Pittsburgh in the AFC Central Division, and they drew a road game at 12-2 Oakland in the first playoff round. QB Ken Stabler, who went on to lead the Raiders to the AFC Championship game for the third straight year, passed for three TDs against Cincinnati. The Bengals closed a 31-14 fourth-quarter deficit to 31-28 with QB Ken Anderson's TD passes of 25 and 14 yards to WRs Charlie Joiner and Isaac Curtis, and Cincinnati had a chance to win after DT Ron Carpenter recovered a Raiders fumble on the Oakland 38 with 4:19 left. But a sack by future Hall-of-Fame LB Ted Hendricks helped the Raiders hold the Bengals without a first down, and after failing on a fourth-down try, the Bengals never regained possession. Stabler completed 17 of 23 attempts for 199 yards, three TDs and just one INT, while the Raiders totaled for 173 yards rushing. Anderson completed 17 of 27 passes for 201 yards, two TDs and no INTs, but was sacked five times.

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League Rankings

Table inside Article
OFFENSE 2 (361.4) 17 (129.9) *1 (231.5)
DEFENSE 7 (280.2) 18 (156.7) 2 (123.5)

Year Totals

Table inside Article
OFFENSE 966 295 1819 3241 5060 340
DEFENSE 889 241 2194 1729 3923 246

Individual Leaders

Table inside Article
Dave Green Scoring
Ken Anderson Passing
Boobie Clark Rushing
Isaac Curtis Receptions
Isaac Curtis Receiving Yards
Dave Green Punting
Lyle Blackwood Punt Return
Bernard Jackson Kickoff Returns
Dave Green Field Goals
Ken Riley Interceptions
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Coaching Staff

Table inside Article
Paul Brown Head Coach
Howard Brinker Linebackers
Jack Donaldson Offensive Backfield
Bill Johnson Offensive Line
Chuck Studley Defensive Line
Bill Walsh Receivers/Quarterbacks
Chuck Weber Defensive Backfield
Kim Wood Strength

1975 NFL Draft: JAN 28 - 29

Table inside Article
1 Glenn Cameron LB Florida 14
2 Al Krevis T Boston College 39
3a Gary Burley (acquired from Atlanta in trade on 8-21-74) DE Pittsburgh 55
3b Gary Sheide QB Brigham Young 64
3c Bo Harris (acquired from Minnesota in trade on 8-10-73) LB Louisiana State 77
4 (sent to Minnesota in trade on 8-10-73) 89
4 Stan Fritts (acquired from Buffalo in trade on 8-28-74) RB North Carolina State 97
5a Pat McInally P/WR Harvard 120
5b Jeff West (acquired from Dallas in trade on 7-3-74) P/TE Cincinnati 122
6a Tom Shuman (acquired from Philadelphia in trade on 3-8-74) QB Penn State 142
6b Rollen Smith CB Arkansas 145
7 Chris Devlin LB Penn State 170
8 Ricky Davis S Alabama 195
9a Greg Dubinetz G Yale 220
9b Lofell Williams (acquired from Buffalo in trade on 7-31-74) WR/RB Virginia Union 227
10 Rocky Felker QB Mississippi State 245
11 Marvin Cobb CB Southern California 276
12 Jack Novak TE Wisconsin 301
13 Ron Rosenberg LB Montana 326
14 Frank Haywood DT North Carolina State 351
15 Greg Enright PK Southern Oregon 376
16 John Tuttle WR Kansas State 401
17 Elvin Charity CB Yale 432

Pro Bowl

Players selected for the 1975 NFL Pro Bowl: QB Ken Anderson, WR Isaac Curtis, CB Lemar Parrish