Falcons fall hard in Cincinnati


After earning a huge win against the New Orleans Saints in the season opener last week, the Falcons looked to go 2-0 as they faced the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on Sunday. But due to a lack of execution on offense and the defense not being able to stop Giovani Bernard, the Bengals took down the Falcons 24-10.

The Falcons had no answer for Bernard who finished the day with 169 total yards (90 rushing, 79 receiving) and one touchdown score which was scored late in the second quarter to give the Bengals the 10-3 lead. But it was the third quarter that sealed the Falcons fate. The Bengals scored their second touchdown early in the third when Andy Dalton threw a 76-yard touchdown pass to Mohamed Sanu. They tacked on to the lead four minutes later when Jeremy Hill scored from 1-yard out. That scoring came off a Matt Ryan interception, which was his first of three in the contest.

Speaking of Ryan, he finished with 231 yards and one touchdown to go along with his three interceptions. That is a different stat line from last week where he threw for 448 yards, three touchdowns and no picks.  Julio Jones was the other top offensive player for the Falcons, catching seven passes for 88 yards and Ryan’s lone touchdown pass.

The Falcons could not find any consistency on offense. While gaining nearly 600 yards of offense against the Saints, they could only muster 309 yards against the Bengals, who gained almost 500 yards of offense. And the Bengals were able to be efficient on offense without All-Pro receiver A.J. Green who suffered a toe injury in the first quarter.

Andy Dalton played a key role in the Bengals success on offense. He completed 15 of 23 passes for 252 yards and one touchdown. This is the second consecutive game where he did not throw an interception and he did not get sacked.

The Bengals, who are the defending AFC North Champions, are 2-0 for the first time since 2006. The Falcons fall to 1-1 and have lost eight of its last nine road games.

There will be no time for the Falcons to dwell on the loss because they have a quick turnaround and face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday night. The game will be played at the Georgia Dome and kickoff will be at 8:30 p.m.

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