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Bengals Battle Eagles to a 13-13 Tie

Shayne Graham missed a 47-yard field goal late in OT that could have won the game for the Bengals, and the game ended in a tie. The Bengals were not without their chances to win it, but couldn’t seem to capitalize on the the excellent field position they were handed in overtime.

This was an ugly game that saw both teams combine for 6 turnovers, including 4 by Donovan McNabb alone. The last game to end in a tie was in November of 2002 in a game between Steelers and Falcons.

There was no scoring in the first quarter, but a Mcnabb fumble on his own 7 yard line, gave the Bengals great field position, entering the second quarter. However, the Bengals could not capitalize on this opportunity, as they only came away with a field goal.

The Eagles would tie the game up on the next drive with a David Akers field goal, but the significant play of the quarter was when McNabb threw a pick in the redzone, which the Bengals would turn into points by way of a 26 yard touchdown reception by T.J. Houshmandzadeh. This would be a recurring theme for McNabb, as he threw another interception, which closed out the first half with the Bengals on top by a score of 10-3.

The Bengals got on the board on their first possession of the second half with another Shayne Graham field goal. On the next possession, though, McNabb would hit Hank Baskett for a 57 yard gain, and then follow it up with a 4 yard touchdown pass to tight end L.J. Smith on the very next play. The lone highlight of the fourth quarter was a 13 play, 68 yard drive by the Eagles that culminated in a field goal, tying the game at 13-13.

Overtime was relatively uneventful, as the Bengals forced the Eagles to punt on each of their possessions, and even got some very good field position out of it, but could just not capitalize. On what would end up the final possession of the game, Trent Cole was flagged for roughing the passer, putting the Bengals in field goal range. However, Shayne Graham could not seal the deal, as he pushed the potential game-winning kick wide right.

The Bengals are starting to play much better of late after their 0-8 start, and have played two solid games in a row. What has been the biggest surprise, though, is the play of their defense, which gave McNabb fits today, and seems to be saving Marvin Lewis’ job. They will now travel to Pittsburgh and will try to play spoiler yet again.

T.J. Houshmandzadeh had another monster game with 12 receptions for 149 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, the Eagles should clearly be discouraged by this result, but were somewhat lucky to get away with the tie. They are not making things easier for themselves in the tough NFC East, and will now travel to Baltimore next week to face the Ravens.

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