Cincinnati Bengals History | 1995 -



The Bengals were alive in the playoff race through Game 14, but were eliminated in a 26-10 loss at Cleveland in Game 15. The Dec. 17 Browns game was the last home game for Cleveland prior to the franchise's controversial move to Baltimore. The Bengals' 7-9 finish included a 2-0 start and wins in four of the last seven games, but Cincinnati lost six of seven in a mid-season stretch, including a 26-23 home loss to Miami in "Shula Bowl II," as Bengals head coach Dave Shula opposed his father, Don, for the second straight year. The Bengals closed the season by erasing a 21-point deficit in a 27-24 win vs. Minnesota, tying the largest comeback to win in club history. Jeff Blake held serve on the No. 1 QB job he had gained in 1994, keeping David Klingler in a backup role, and both Blake and WR Carl Pickens earned Pro Bowl berths. Pickens set a franchise record for TDs (17, all receiving) that stands through 2017. (In receiving TDs only, no other Bengals player through 2017 has had more than 12.) The Bengals had retained Pickens for 1995 by matching a free agency offer he received from Arizona. The Bengals suffered a severe blow in preseason game three on Aug. 17 at Detroit, as RB Ki-Jana Carter of Penn State, the top overall pick in the '95 draft, was lost for the season to a severe knee injury. Carter, who had missed the first two preseason games with an ankle sprain, was lost at Detroit on his third Cincinnati carry. The Bengals had traded with Carolina to gain Carter as an offensive centerpiece, moving up in the first round for the first time in franchise history. Carter would come back to play seven NFL seasons, four of those for Cincinnati, but he never matched his college form at the pro level and closed with only 1144 career rushing yards. The year of 1995 was filled with issues regarding the Bengals' need for a new stadium. A lack of progress on the local front led club president Mike Brown to explore the possibility of a move to Baltimore, pressed by a deadline on Baltimore's end. But Brown repeatedly professed he had no desire to move the team unless forced to by an untenable local situation. On June 28, just minutes before a Bengals-set deadline, Cincinnati City Council voted 5-4 to approve a Hamilton County plan from Commissioner Bob Bedinghaus to raise the county sales tax by one percent to fund two new stadiums. In the end that proposal was scaled down to a one-half percent hike, funding stadiums and also providing homeowners with property tax relief. But after the County Commission voted to implement the tax, forces opposed to the increase successfully petitioned to make approval subject to a public referendum to be held in March of 1996. In October, Mike Brown announced that the Bengals for 1996 would move most of their front-office operation from Riverfront Stadium to the team's new practice facility building at Spinney Field.

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League Rankings

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OFFENSE17 (324.5)24 (89.9)11 (234.6)
DEFENSE30 (396.8)26 (131.5)29 (265.3)

Year Totals

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Individual Leaders

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Doug PelfreyScoring
Jeff BlakePassing
Harold GreenRushing
Carl PickensReceptions
Carl PickensReceiving Yards
Lee JohnsonPunting
Eric BieniemyPunt Returns
David DunnKickoff Returns
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Coaching Staff

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Dave ShulaHead Coach
Paul AlexanderOffensive Line
Jim AndersonRunning Backs
Ken AndersonQuarterbacks
Bruce CosletOffensive Coordinator
Bobby DePaulDefensive Line
John GarrettOffensive Assistant/Wide Receivers
Tim KrumrieDefensive Assistant
Ron MeeksDefensive Backfield
Gary MoellerTight Ends
Joe PascaleLinebackers
Larry PeccatielloDefensive Coordinator
Joe WesselSpecial Teams
Kim WoodStrength and Conditioning
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1995 NFL Draft: April 22 - 23

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1Ki-Jana Carter (acquired from Carolina in trade on 4-22-95)RBPenn State1
1(sent to Carolina in trade on 4-22-95)5
2(sent to Carolina in trade on 4-22-95)36
3Melvin TutenTSyracuse69
4Sam ShadeSAlabama102
5David DunnWRFresno State139
6Ryan GrigsonTPurdue175
7John WalshQBBrigham Young213

Pro Bowl

Players selected for the 1995 Pro Bowl: QB Jeff Blake, WR Carl Pickens