Bengals nomination for MVP during 27-24 win over the Lions

Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

We nominate a handful of players that made the biggest impact against the Detroit Lions on Sunday.

Andy Dalton: After winning the CJ in week six for his performance against the Buffalo Bills, Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton makes returns for another CJ in week seven. Dalton completed over 70 percent of his passes for 372 yards passing, three touchdowns and a passer rating of 135.9. Dalton also went five of eight passing on third down, converting four.

A.J. Green: These are the type of games that we're expecting from A.J. Green every week -- obviously, it's not realistic, but the expectation is nonetheless there. Green's 82-yard touchdown pass on Cincinnati's third play from scrimmage set the stage for a monster game between two of the game's best receivers. If we were idle observers, it would have been a fun game; but as fans, our hearts were giving out midway through the fourth, eliminating any enjoyment of the game while it was being played.

Green caught six of the eight passes that he was targeted, for 155 yards passing, a 25.8-yard average and a touchdown that gave Cincinnati an early lead. It wasn't his best performance of the season; that came in Chicago with six grabs, 162 yards, two touchdowns. But it was the most exciting and it was another subplot that helped Cincinnati win.

Vontaze Burfict: Because the Lions strung together over 400 yards on Sunday, it's not surprising that the Bengals defense isn't getting much attention. However, that would just be foolish. Burfict had another tremendous game, creating 13 tackles and nearly doubling the production of every other defensive player. Burfict added two tackles or loss, a quarterback hit and two passes defensed.

Carlos Dunlap: Lead the team with multiple hits on the quarterback, but an incredible effort against the Lions running game. I'm becoming increasingly convinced that Dunlap is the most complete defensive lineman on the team; he's not the best pass rusher (that will stick with Geno Atkins for now), and maybe not the best run defender (Michael Johnson is having a good season as well), but no one is having the overall production that Dunlap is having. But it was his field goal block turned out to be a ten-point swing for Cincinnati; not only did it prevent the Lions from securing three points, it indirectly led to Cincinnati's touchdown later in the second quarter.

Mike Nugent: We'll repeat what we said last week. It's difficult for us to nominate a kicker who fails to convert every field goal throughout the course of the game. But when you crushed a game-winning 54-yarder as time expires, it renders the other misses completely inert.

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