Wreck Your Team Campaign Peaks: Bengals Knock Chargers Out Of The 2010 Playoffs With 34-20 Win

This week's Wreck Your Team campaign took us to Paul Brown Stadium as the San Diego Chargers needed a win to remain in contention for the 2010 NFL Playoffs. Three hours after kickoff, the Cincinnati Bengals officially eliminated the San Diego Chargers from the 2010 Playoffs after the Bengals offense put 34 points up on the league's best rated defense and held Phillip Rivers and the league's second-best offense to only 20 points and nearly 100 yards under their average 397 yards/game. (Note: The Chargers had about 280 total yards when the Bengals took a 34-13 lead).

Before the game, Chad Ochocinco sat while struggling with bone spurs in his left foot. Jerome Simpson started in his place and caught six passes for 126 yards receiving, including a game-clinching 59-yard touchdown reception to give Cincinnati a 27-13 lead with just over six minutes left in the game. Simpson caught two touchdowns. After Geno Atkins knocked the football down at the line of scrimmage to force a turnover on downs, the Bengals answered with three-straight runs for 26 yards, including a 10-yard touchdown, to give the Bengals a 34-13 lead.

Notes:

  • The Bengals scored a season-high 34 points, which is the first time that the Bengals scored 30 points or more and won.
  • Carson Palmer recorded four pass touchdowns and 269 yards passing, completing 16 of 21 passes. This translates to a passer rating of 157.2. It's a career best, with 146.7 against the Chicago Bears on October 25,2009, being the second.
  • This is the first time Palmer has four touchdowns in 2010 and the first four-touchdown performance since throwing for five touchdowns against the Bears on October 25, 2009.
  • The Bengals scored three touchdowns on their final three possession, excluding the five-play end-of-the-game drive to pick up a first down.
  • The Bengals defense forced the Chargers to punt four times and fumble one during San Diego's first five possessions of the game. The Bengals defense finished with four forced punts, three turnovers, two field goals and a touchdown.
  • Simpson and Andre Caldwell, the two receivers starting for Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens, caught 10 passes for 211 yards receiving and two touchdowns.
  • Carlos Dunlap recorded his eighth sack of the season, continuing a streak of at least a shared sack in five straight games and six in the previous seven games.
  • The Cincinnati Bengals reached the Red Zone four times, and scored four touchdowns.
  • Rey Maualuga recorded his second interception this year, returning the football 47 yards. The Bengals ran four plays and scored a touchdown to take a 20-10 lead.
  • Kelley Washington is an ass-clown, for some show-boat display of displeasure with the Bengals. After a scoring a touchdown late in the game, Washington shouted for everyone to move so he could hit the Bengals banner in the endzone.

Next week's Wreck Your Team campaign will take us to Baltimore as we work to make sure that the Ravens remain as the fifth seed. With a win next week, the Ravens can take the second seed if the Pittsburgh Steelers lose to the Cleveland Browns. It's not the glorious fireworks of knocking a team out of the playoffs, but as long as another team has to suffer from the Bengals finally playing good football, then we'll be fine with that.

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