The Cincinnati Bengals made easy work of the Detroit Lions en route to a 34-11 win in the Motor City. The Bengals have now matched their win total for the entire 2020 season and doubled the 2019 mark of two.
Joe Burrow extended his streak of two-plus touchdown games with tosses to Joe Mixon, Chris Evans and C.J. Uzomah. Burrow threw 29 passes, completed 19 of them, and gained 271 yards through the air.
Burrow’s Detroit counterpart, Jared Goff, had an accurate game, though an inefficient one. Goff completed nearly 70 percent of his passes, but only gained 4.5 yards per attempt. His 33-yard long was the only one on the day that went further than 15 yards.
Logan Wilson played a huge part in stopping the Lions’ offense with an interception, six combined tackles, and two TFLs.
The Bengals rushing attack proved dangerous, gaining 4.4 yards per rush, but the running backs showed their prowess through the air. Mixon and Evans combined for eight receptions, 108 yards, and two touchdowns. With five receptions, Mixon was the team leader in receptions.
This was a huge day for the rookie Evans. Getting increasing playing time in Samaje Perine’s absence, he had 4.5 yards per attempt on the ground and 16.3 yards per reception. He had a total of nine touches and 67 yards to go with his receiving touchdowns.
The Bengals were looking for their first opening drive score of the season. Burrow called his own number twice, and handed off to Mixon three times. But it was through the air that a running back broke the scoreless tie with 8:26 remaining in the quarter.
Burrow lofted a 24-yard pass to Evans, and the former Michigan running back had his first career touchdown in Detroit. Evan McPherson hit the extra point off the upright, but it went through and the Bengals had a 7-0 lead.
We heard so much about that sort of catch from Chris Evans in camp.— Willie Lutz (@willie_lutz) October 17, 2021
Beautiful execution from the 6th round rookie and a great toss from Burrow on 3rd-and-5 to give the #Bengals a 7-0 lead over the #Lions.
Penalties kept the Bengals from making the most of their possessions. Rookie Trey Hill got his first start at right guard, but back-to-back penalties on Hill led to a 3rd-and-20, which resulted in an interception. The Bengals got the ball back, but a Riley Reiff penalty cancelled out a third-down conversion and led to a punt.
The tried and true cure for a slow offense this year has been a deep ball to Ja’Marr Chase at the end of the half. Burrow hit Chase for a 34-yard completion to get to the red zone. The Bengals didn’t have time to get a touchdown out of it, but McPherson ended the half with a 38-yard field goal to give the Bengals a 10-0 halftime lead.
The Bengals got the ball back in the third quarter, and needed to convert a fourth down. On fourth down, Burrow passed it to Mixon on a bootleg, and Mixon ran the ball 40 yards for the score. The Bengals had two touchdowns on two passes to running backs, and Burrow notched his sixth game this season with multiple touchdown passes. After the extra point, the Bengals led 17-0 with 11:36 remaining in the quarter.
JA’MARR CHASE LEAD BLOCKING IT TO THE HOUSE (right in front of penei sewell) pic.twitter.com/W7EPrdav41— Willie Lutz (@willie_lutz) October 17, 2021
The Lions went three-and-out, which gave the Bengals another chance to add to the lead. Burrow got the Bengals down to the red zone again, but two passes that went off receivers’ hands forced the Bengals to settle for three. With 3:38, McPherson made a 40-yard field goal to increase the Bengals’ lead to 20-10.
Burrow found Chase again, this time for 53 yards. The Bengals’ drive started at the five-yard line, and the bomb to Chase got the Bengals into plus territory. Mixon came off the bench after it looked like he was hurting, and ran for 18 yards on the next play.
The drive ended on a play action pass to C.J. Uzomah for a two-yard touchdown. Burrow put it where only Uzomah could get it, and after the extra point, the Bengals had a 27-0 lead with 12:38 to go in the game. This was the highest point total in regulation time this season, and the first time they have scored 27 points since the overtime win against the Vikings in Week 1.
C.J. Uzomah for 6️⃣— PFF CIN Bengals (@PFF_Bengals) October 17, 2021
Too easy pic.twitter.com/4VtrTuodCC
The Bengals eased up on defense and gave up short gains to the Lions. Even though the Lions made their way down the field, they ate up clock on their 13-play drive. The Bengals did force them to settle for a field goal, and former Bengals kicker Austin Siebert got the Lions on the scoreboard. With 8:47 remaining in the game, the cut into the Bengals’ lead, down 27-3.
Satisfied with the lead, Brandon Allen took the Bengals’ snaps for the rest of the game. A couple of pass interference calls helped the Bengals get to the goal line, where Allen connected with Auden Tate for each players’ first touchdown of the year. With 5:16 to go in the game, the Bengals breached the 30-point mark for the first time this season, leading 34-3.
The Bengals put their second string in on defense, but the Lions kept their starters in the game. The Lions drove all the way down and got a one-yard rushing touchdown from D’Andre Swift, and Amon-Ra St. Brown scored on a two point conversion. But with 2:15 to go, the Lions were still down 34-11.
The Bengals improved to 4-2 after the win. The Lions fell to 0-6 after they dropped their 10 straight game.
The Bengals will head to Baltimore next week to take on the Ravens in a crucial division game. The winner of that game would take first place in the division after the Ravens defeated the Chargers to go 5-1.