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Bengals Banter: Breaking News. Bengals are one win away from clinching the division. A look at the human Psyche and sarcasm

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Breaking playoff note: Cincinnati can clinch the AFC North with a win this weekend. Also, Cincinnati can clinch a playoff spot if Jacksonville AND New York Jets AND the Texans and Dolphins ending in a tie. Hummm... OK, so the Bengals can clinch the North this weekend.

Chad Ochocinco Johnson chose not to wear Chris Henry's number on Sunday against the San Diego Chargers. He said that he didn't want that to be a distraction during the game. I think, in the end, it was probably the wise choice. As much as we'd like to see Henry honored by Chad, the best thing that Chad can do now is keep hauling in those 50-yard touchdown passes.

However, we were asked by the Washington Post if the Chad wore Henry's jersey, should the NFL fine him or let him be. Of course, I'm going to stick up for our boy, saying "Where's the harm."

Cincy Jungle gets recognition . In news regarding Cincy Jungle, Sports Media Challenge ranked Cincy Jungle as the sixth blog overall in the NFL blogosphere. Sports Media Challenge ranks blogs based on content, the community and the influence on the overall impact within the sports blogosphere. They wrote about us:

This blog is one that didn't particularly dominate any of our criteria, but was consistently strong across the board. They don't really have a lot of special features aside from Kirkendall's Bengals' Banter, but they do the expected (previews, recaps, etc.) very well. A model of consistency, they're rewarded with a top 10 spot.

So thank you, the readers, all of whom that greatly interact with each other. We couldn't do it without you guys. Now we're going to be obsessed with improving our rankings until 2012.

Random thoughts about the Bengals and Sunday's loss.

On Leon Hall: It appeared that there was confusion on Vincent Jackson's 33-yard touchdown reception. After Hall bumped Jackson, it appeared that Hall was passing Jackson onto a safety. Problem was that there was on safety covering Jackson.

However, it's the 15-yard reception by Malcolm Floyd that set up Nate Kaeding's game winning field goal. Hall said, "I was playing the inside. I know when I look back on the film I should have had a better break and I've got to contest the ball." Fine, contest it. But why aren't the Bengals calling a defense that prevents the use of the sidelines anyway? I'm more willing to let Hall of the hook -- he's had a great year and deserves the benefit even through a bad performance. I want to ask Mike Zimmer why the team isn't blocking the hell out of the sidelines.

On Carson Palmer.

  • First 300-yard passing game since December 30, 2007.
  • First game with 40 attempted throws since throwing 44 times against Cleveland on October 4.
  • First game with multiple touchdown receptions since throwing five touchdowns against the Chicago Bears on October 25.

On Cedric Benson. It didn't seem like Benson was himself Sunday. He had a few really good runs, but one in particular stood out to me. With 9:21 left in the third quarter, Benson took a second down handoff from the San Diego 48-yard line and kicked it to the outside. Approaching the first down marker, he elected to go out of bounds instead of turning upfield. It was very uncharacteristic of him. As a result (or as a result of the play-call), Carson Palmer tried to squeeze a pass to Jeremi Johnson on the sidelines which fell incomplete. Bengals punt. Granted, one play doesn't summarize the performance of any player and Benson did pick up a first down on third-and-one earlier in the quarter. Still, it was uncharacteristic move for him.

Benson stat: Benson rushed for 53 yards on 15 carries. This year, Benson has rushed for over 100 yards in five games (a record to be broken? read below). The Bengals are 5-0. When Benson doesn't rush for over 100 yards and carries the football 10 times or more, the Bengals are 2-4.

Chad Ochocinco stat: Bengals receiver Chad Ochocinco had three receptions for 79 yards receiving and a touchdown. This puts Chad over 1,000 yards receiving with eight touchdowns on the season. Two more touchdowns and he'll tie his career-high (10) he set in 2003.

Points broken down by quarter.
Offense Points Scored Defense Points Allowed
1st Q 61 1st Q 48
2nd Q 115 2nd Q 73
3rd Q 42 3rd Q 58
4th Q 67 4th Q 65
Three points scored in overtime against the Cleveland Browns

Don Banks details the list of tragedies that's faced the Bengals this season.

Clark Judge believes that the Bengals deserve praise. Then, in a separate piece, Clark Judge writes on something totally not related to the Bengals: "Suddenly, it's beginning to look like 2006 all over again in Denver." I shuttered.

Peter King has a nice piece about the Bengals and Henry, concluding "if ever a team won by losing, it was Cincinnati on Sunday.

Andrew Sharp takes a deeper examination into sports tragedies in general.

Paul Daugherty gives the Bengals praise for a loss.

Benson fell short of breaking the team record for most 100-yard games in a season. He has two chances left.

Another former Bengals player died this weekend. Clem Turner died in an accident in West Prince Hill.

Turner, a running back, went to Woodward High School. According to the Bengals' Web site, he was the first Cincinnati prep player taken by the team -- a fourth-round choice in 1969. He played for Denver from 1970-1972.

Chad has been showing his emotions with the loss of his teammate.

Who Dey Fans believed that the Bengals can play with any team in the NFL after seeing Sunday's performance against the Chargers.