FLASHBACK: The dreadful 2009 season

Chris Trotman

The Cincinnati Bengals were returning to the postseason in 2009 but the New York Jets disrupted everything.

Cincinnati's history against the New York Jets has been awful.

Just awful.

New York has won four straight meetings against Cincinnati, and nine of the last ten games. But nothing compares to the string of games in 2009 when the Jets essentially turned an exciting season into a dreadful decline.

Jan 3, 2010: Jets 37, Bengals 0.

A bit misleading because the Bengals couldn't improve their postseason berth, nor lose any spots in the seeding in this regular season finale. Cincinnati was effectively looking to end the night without any injuries. Not to mention, the game featured a frozen turf, temperatures falling below 20, winds reaching 25 miles per hour, and a wind chill below five degrees.

Mark Sanchez, Carson Palmer, and J.T. O'Sullivan combined for 94 yards passing for the entire game, with Palmer completing only one of 11 passes for no yards (a passer rating of 1.7) in the first half. Former Bengals receiver Chad Johnson considered it more of an exhibition. "Similar to a preseason game," he said the Tuesday after.

New York partied for making the postseason while Cincinnati's thawing process wouldn't begin until after losing the next game. This momentum (and lack of any for the Bengals), set the stage for the first round of the 2009 NFL playoffs.

Jan 9, 2010: Jets 24, Bengals 14.

Six days later and these two teams met again. Cincinnati was lifeless while the Jets were coming off their biggest win of the year earning a spot in the postseason.

"Come Saturday, you'll see an energetic, enthusiastic, rambunctious Bengals team," offensive lineman Bobbie Williams said at the time. "I like our odds this time."

Nope.

Instead of New York, the game was played at Paul Brown Stadium. The wind chill rose to a tropical 11 degrees, and Carson Palmer completed a pass beyond one yard.

Despite Cedric Benson crushing New York's defense with 169 yards rushing, the Bengals passing game failed to get off the ground (Palmer compiled a passer rating of 58.3 with only 146 yards) while the defense were on their heels throughout most of the night.

Mark Sanchez was an efficient 12 of 15 passing for 182 yards, including a 45-yard touchdown throw to Dustin Keller. New York ran the football 41 times or 171 yards rushing -- a majority of the production from Shonn Greene -- while scoring two touchdowns.


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