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NFL / WEEK 5 | MIAMI 31, CINCINNATI 16

Bengals Only Half Bad in Loss

October 02, 2000|From Associated Press

CINCINNATI — The winless Cincinnati Bengals gave the Miami Dolphins just what the Dolphins expected--an emotional effort for a new coach--but only for a half.

"Everything we talked about not wanting to happen, happened," Dolphin Coach Dave Wannstedt said. "We fumbled once. We threw an interception. But we felt like we had seen their best shot, and we found out what we were made of."

The Bengals got off to a fast start under Dick LeBeau but finished up as they nearly always do as Miami rallied in the second half Sunday for a 31-16 victory.

In their first game since LeBeau replaced Bruce Coslet as coach, the Bengals (0-4) blew an early lead as Jay Fiedler connected with Oronde Gadsden on touchdown passes of seven and 21 yards, and Lamar Smith had an 18-yard touchdown run for the Dolphins (4-1).

"He's a big, tall guy," Fiedler said of Gadsen. "It was just a matter of throwing it up and letting him make some plays.

The Bengals, who so often have been flat early in games, drove for a touchdown on their first possession and did not give up a big play until the last play of the half.

With offensive coordinator Ken Anderson taking over the play calling, the Bengals went to Corey Dillon five times during their 13-play opening drive that ended with Akili Smith's nine-yard touchdown pass to Peter Warrick.

Warrick's one-handed catch in the back of the end zone gave the Bengals their first points since the season opener. After beginning the season with a 24-7 loss to the Cleveland Browns, they lost to the Jacksonville Jaguars, 13-0, and to the Baltimore Ravens, 37-0.

The Dolphins trailed, 13-0, until Olindo Mare kicked a 40-yard field goal with 56 seconds to play in the half. On the second play after the kickoff, defensive end Jason Taylor knocked the ball from Akili Smith, who had dropped back to pass, scooped it up and returned it 29 yards for a touchdown to make the score 13-10.

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