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Bengals Give Lewis an Emotional Win

October 20, 2003|From Associated Press

CINCINNATI — The clock hadn't yet reached zero when Raven linebackers Ray Lewis and Peter Boulware ran to the opposing sideline, right hands outstretched.

They knew how much this one meant to their close friend.

The Cincinnati Bengals turned Baltimore quarterback Kyle Boller's three turnovers into a 24-point swing, then held on for a 34-26 victory Sunday that was indescribably sweet for their fired-up rookie coach, Marvin Lewis.

In a measuring-up game, his Bengals (2-4) showed they belong.

"He wanted it," said Chad Johnson, who had five catches for 130 yards. "He wouldn't say so, but he did. I wanted to win for him more than anybody. He wanted it bad."

He got it with a solid plan -- make Boller sweat, then make the Ravens pay.

Jon Kitna threw touchdown passes of 45 and 82 yards -- the latter off a fortuitous deflection -- as the Bengals went ahead, 24-7, during Boller's disastrous first half.

After a couple of touchdowns pulled the Ravens close, the Bengals ran out the clock and their coach got a series of hugs. Marvin Lewis was defensive coordinator on the 2000 Raven team that won the Super Bowl and is the standard for everything he's done in Cincinnati.

During the week, Lewis conceded that he practically got tears in his eyes as he watched game film of Baltimore's defense.

Abandoning his in-control demeanor, Lewis screamed from the sideline Sunday and went onto the field to exhort his players during timeouts -- a sign of how much this one meant, though he wouldn't admit it.

"I've got a job to do, they've got a job to do," Lewis said. "I love them all, but we're competing against them."

The Ravens made no attempt to hide their disgust with how they played. They had 13 penalties for 113 yards and looked nothing like a first-place team.

Though 3-3, they're still atop the AFC North, the only division without a winning record.

"It's not the end of the world, but it's a wake-up call for us," said safety Ed Reed.

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