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The Cincinnati Bengals walked into Baltimore in Week 7 and after trading some early punches, used a big Ja’Marr Chase touchdown to strike a knockout blow on the Ravens.
In doing so, the Bengals cast aside any doubt about their status as playoff contenders while highlighting that Joe Burrow-Chase connection as one of the NFL’s best.
Here’s everything we know coming out of the 41-17 blowout.
Final score: 41-17
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow gestures to teammates before lining up to spike the ball against the Baltimore Ravens during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Gail Burton)
Keys to the game
Cincinnati Bengals tight end C.J. Uzomah (87) catches a touchdown pass during an NFL football game against the Baltimore Ravens, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021 in Baltimore, Md. (AP Photo/Daniel Kucin Jr.)
CJ. Uzomah: The No. 1 tight end on the depth chart continues to feast while defenses focus on Cincinnati’s wideouts. He had two touchdowns on the day. He’s just enough of an athletic threat to change games…Ja’Marr Chase: The rookie had nearly 200 yards by the fourth quarter and did almost literally whatever he wanted all over the field all day…Defense: Lou Anarumo’s unit, keyed by pass-rushers Trey Hendrickson and Sam Hubbard, did a lot of bending but not a ton of breaking, which kept this one close enough to win…QBs: Both Joe Burrow and Lamar Jackson just kept finding ways to extend plays and in theory, win. Burrow was making critical checks at the line and escaping pressure while Jackson pulled off his usual wizardry with the football in his hands.
It was over when...
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow throws a pass against the Baltimore Ravens during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Gail Burton)
…Ja’Marr Chase took a catch 82 yards for a touchdown with nearly six minutes left in the third quarter. The defense had been good enough all day to think a 10-point lead was enough and it was.
Bengals' Top Performers
Baltimore Ravens running back Le’Veon Bell (17) applies a stiff arm on Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Logan Wilson (55) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Gail Burton)
QB Joe Burrow: 23/38, 416 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT
RB Joe Mixon: 12 rushes, 59 yards, 1 TD
WR Ja’Marr Chase: 8 catches, 201 yards, 1 TD
TE C.J. Uzomah: 3 catches, 91 yards, 2 TD
LB Logan Wilson: 7 tackles, 1 TFL
Edge Sam Hubbard: 2.5 sacks
Cincinnati Bengals tight end C.J. Uzomah, left, runs with the ball next to Baltimore Ravens cornerback Marlon Humphrey after making a catch before scoring a touchdown against the Baltimore Ravens during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
There weren’t any major injuries of note for the Bengals as the streak of good luck continues.
Important game notes
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase (1) runs with the ball against Baltimore Ravens safety Chuck Clark (36) and cornerback Marlon Humphrey during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
— The offense didn’t target Ja’Marr Chase on the first drive, which wasn’t ideal. Neither was punting from the 39, only to set the Ravens back only 19 yards after a bad punt. Little things like these are killers against a team as good as Baltimore.
— Cincinnati’s playcalling on short-yardage attempts was abysmal in the first half, including a 2nd-and-1 quarterback sneak. But Burrow, as usual, has a way of bailing out anyone and everyone and eventually hit C.J Uzomah for a pretty touchdown pass to make it 10-3.
— Lou Anarumo’s defense pitched a near-perfect performance in the first half until the very end, forcing three-and-outs and using creative blitzes to make Lamar Jackson uncomfortable. They eventually broke, letting up a 75-yard touchdown drive to make it 10-10, but that’s just part of playing against a talent like Jackson.
— Two touchdowns for C.J. Uzomah after a smooth score early in the third quarter. Burrow checked at the line, Tyler Boyd got nearly quadruple-covered and Uzomah did the rest. He’s feasting while defenses worry about the wideouts.
— Trey Hendrickson picked a key moment to have his first sack of the day, knocking Baltimore out of field goal range in the third quarter. He and Sam Hubbard had monster showings through three quarters.
— Ja’Marr Chase is uncoverable, as noted by his epic 82-yard touchdown.
— Shocking we know, but Chase also had a catch that put the Bengals in kill-shot territory with the game at 27-17. Burrow ended up throwing an ill-advised pick when an incompletion still nets them three points — but that’s just not the character of this aggressive team.
— It was pretty clear the Ravens threw in the towel early in the fourth. Joe Mixon ran for a big score, then Samaje Perine did the same to hang 40-plus on the Ravens.
Oct 24, 2021; Baltimore, MD, USA; Cincinnati Bengals running back Joe Mixon (28) walks for the locker room during warmups before the first quarter of the NFL Week 7 game between the Baltimore Ravens and the Cincinnati Bengals at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore on Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021. Mandatory Credit: Sam Greene-USA TODAY Sports
The Bengals finish off a three-game road trip with a visit to New York to play the lowly Jets.
That looks like an easy one on paper for obvious reasons, but it’s also a critical one they can’t overlook — after that, it’s a date with Cleveland before a bye week.