Bengals in midst of epic playoff win drought
The Bengals are 0-4 in playoff games under coach Marvin Lewis. Lewis is only the second coach in the Super Bowl era to remain in his position after 10 seasons without winning a playoff game. Jim Mora coached the New Orleans Saints from 1986-1996 and went 0-4 in the playoffs over that span. The Bengals have not won a playoff game since the 1990 season, when they defeated the Houston Oilers, 41-14, at home in the wild-card round. That is the longest current drought between playoff wins in the NFL. The Bengals have never won a road playoff game in their team's history (0-6).
Lewis dropping the 'L' in Bengals
The 2012 season was the Bengals' fourth winning season in the past 22 years. All four have come under coach Marvin Lewis, including three in the last four seasons. In 10 seasons with Lewis as coach, the Bengals have had four winning seasons, three seasons at 8-8 and three losing seasons. Prior to hiring Lewis, the franchise did not have a winning record in 12 consecutive seasons. Dave Shula (1992-1996), Bruce Coslet (1996-2000) and Dick LeBeau (2000-2002) were the coaches prior to Lewis not to have a winning record during a season.
Dalton in elite company
It's not often that you hear Andy Dalton put in the same class as Dan Marino and Peyton Manning. But Dalton is one of three players in NFL history to pass for at least 20 touchdowns in each of his first two seasons (27 in 2012, 20 in 2011). Only Pro Football Hall of Famer Dan Marino (20 in 1983; 48 in 1984) and future Hall of Famer Peyton Manning (26 in 1998 and 1999) have accomplished the feat. Dalton has more touchdowns than Jake Locker and Blaine Gabbert combined, two of the four quarterbacks selected ahead of him in the 2011 NFL Draft.
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Ickey's incredible dropoff
Ickey Woods exploded onto the scene in his rookie season of 1988, rushing for 1,066 yards and 15 touchdowns, and helping lead the Bengals to the Super Bowl. His 5.3 yards-per-rush average led the league in 1988 and his 15 rushing touchdowns are tied for the second most by a rookie in NFL history. Woods was the leading rusher in Super Bowl XXIII with 79 yards, but the Bengals fell to the 49ers, 20-16. In the three seasons following his rookie year, he rushed for a combined 459 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Anderson's strong case for Canton
Ken Anderson is unlikely to be enshrined in Canton, but he put up deserving numbers during his 16-year tenure in Cincinnati. In 1974 and 1975, Anderson led the league in passing yards -- something Joe Montana never did. He also led the league in passer rating four times (1974, 1975, 1981 and 1982) -- twice as many as Montana. In 1982, Anderson set the single-season completion percentage record (70.55), which stood until Drew Brees broke it 27 years later. In 1981, Anderson was named NFL MVP, and led the Bengals to Super Bowl XVI. The Bengals lost to Montana's 49ers, but Anderson threw for 300 yards, compared to Montana's 157.
Riverfront's big chill
On Jan. 10, 1982 the Bengals hosted the San Diego Chargers in the AFC Championship Game at Riverfront Stadium with the coldest wind chill ever recorded for an NFL game (minus-59 degrees). The Bengals dominated the game, forcing four turnovers (2 interceptions, 2 fumbles). The Bengals held the Chargers to their lowest yardage total of the year (301) and won the game, 27-7. That year, the average temperature on game days for the Chargers was 62.6 degrees. Their previous coldest game had been 39 degrees in Chicago. With an actual temperature of minus-9 degrees, the 1981 AFC Championship Game is considered the second-coldest game behind the infamous "Ice Bowl," the 1967 NFL Championship between the Green Bay Packers and Dallas Cowboys.
The Collinsworth effect
The Bengals had the fourth fewest passing yards from 1979-1980, so they drafted two wide receivers with their first two picks in the 1981 NFL Draft. Their second-round pick, Cris Collinsworth, would lead the team with 1,009 yards and 8 touchdowns. The Bengals jumped up to the third-ranked passing offense, and made a run to the Super Bowl. In fact, Collinsworth led the team in receiving for six consecutive seasons. The only other Bengals receiver to have 1,000 yards in his rookie season was A.J. Green in 2011.
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The lost season
In 2005, the Bengals went 11-5 and won their division for the first time since 1990, which also happened to be the last time they made the playoffs. On the team's second offensive play of the wild-card playoffs, Carson Palmer threw a 66-yard pass to Chris Henry but tore his ACL after being rolled up on by Kimo von Oelhoffen. Just like that, the Bengals' 15-year playoff wait was over before it started.
Anthony Munoz was voted first-team All-Pro nine times during his career. Only one player has been voted to the team more often -- Jerry Rice, the greatest wide receiver and perhaps the greatest player of all time was voted to the team 10 times. However, Rice played 20 NFL seasons, while Munoz played for 13 years. This means Rice was voted to the team in half his seasons, while Munoz was placed on the team in nearly 70 percent of his NFL seasons.
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Adriel Jeremiah Green
A.J. Green has been spectacular in his first two NFL seasons. Green's 2,407 receiving yards in his first two seasons is fourth in NFL history behind only Randy Moss (2,726), Jerry Rice (2,497) and Torry Holt (2,423). His 162 receptions are second all time behind only Marques Colston's 168 receptions in 2006 and 2007. Green's 18 touchdowns are tied for fourth behind Randy Moss (28), Rob Gronkowski (27) and Marques Colston (19). Should Green continue on his torrid pace, he might go down as one of the best ever.