PASSING OFFENSE: A -- Carson Palmer threw for 335 yards and two touchdowns. Despite his one interception, Palmer matched Peyton Manning almost pass for pass. The offensive line protected Palmer, allowing the league's No. 1 sack defense just one sack. Chad Johnson had a career single-game high of 189 receiving yards. RUSHING OFFENSE: A-minus -- The Bengals ran for 164 yards, and the only bad call was a third-quarter pitch left to Chris Perry on a fourth-and-1 play that was stopped. Perry ran for a career-high 82 yards on eight attempts. Rudi Johnson had two touchdowns on the ground. PASSING DEFENSE: D -- Manning was on fire. The Colts scored touchdowns on their first five possessions in the first half. Manning threw for 272 yards in the first two quarters alone. Cornerback Keiwan Ratliff had an interception that he returned deep into Colts territory to set up a late touchdown in the second quarter. The Bengals had no answer for TE Dallas Clark, who had 125 yards receiving. SS Ifeanyi Ohalete had a poor game, missing two key tackles and committing two costly penalties. RUSHING DEFENSE: C -- The Bengals concentrated on stopping Edgerrin James, and they did in the first half, controlling him with just 29 yards on the ground. In the second half, the Bengals dropped a safety, and James went for 60 yards. Still, a solid job by the Bengals. SPECIAL TEAMS: B -- K Shayne Graham made three field goals, all from more than 40 yards. The special teams made a valiant try at an onside kick at the end of the game. Tab Perry made the most of his eight kickoff returns, averaging 22.6 yards and running 39 yards with the second-half kickoff to set up a scoring drive. COACHING: B -- Marvin Lewis had his team ready to play, at least offensively. The Bengals believe they are any team's equal and talked, even after the eight-point loss, about meeting the Colts again in the playoffs. Defensive coordinator Chuck Bresnahan could not come up with a scheme that could contain the Colts. Offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski made a curious call on a fourth-and-1 pitch to the left. The Bengals had run for 164 yards right into the teeth of the Indianapolis defense.
Bengals Report Card
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