The Cincinnati Bengals are 4-1. I’ll let that number sink in for a second. Meanwhile, teams like the New England Patriots and the Pittsburgh Steelers are 3-2. Hell, the Tennessee Titans are 0-4 even though they are coming off a 13-3 season, while the NFC West is a currently led by a team with a 3-2 record.
A quick show of hands: Who, when the season was getting ready to start, would’ve thought the Bengals would have better records than the defending Super Bowl champs (a team the Bengals have already beaten), the Tom Brady-led Patriots, the Titans, who are coming off a 13-3 2008 season and the NFC West division leaders? Yeah, you with your hand up? Go ahead and put it back down because no one thought the Bengals would be in such a position; no matter how many episodes of Hard Knocks you watched, no matter how much you follow Ochocinco’s crazy Twitter stream.
Before the season started, no one would’ve ever guessed the Bengals would be one crazy-ass Brandon Stokley play away from being undefeated; I don’t care how much you say you did because it’s not true.
One of the reasons the Bengals are where they are has to do with the emergence of Andre Caldwell as a dangerous option for Carson Palmer. The Florida Gators star has quickly cemented himself along side the Chad Ochocincos and Chris Henrys of the world, and his contributions — as seen in the lead video — do not need to be discounted. Lest we forget, this is Caldwell’s second game-winning touchdown catch; his first one being against the Steelers. This means, not only is Caldwell a legitimate threat in the Bengals offense, he also saves his dramatic finishes for conference foes, making his contributions all the more impressive.
It’s one thing to score the winning touchdown against a non-conference foe in middle-of-the-season game no one is watching. But to do it against teams in the same conference, teams that are considered superior to the Bengals, is absolutely huge.
To say it’s been one of those seasons for the Baltimore Ravens would probably be an understatement, especially from the perspective of Ravens fans. Just when you thought it couldn’t get any lower (although, it’s hard to get much lower after getting swept by the lowly Bengals, but I digress), the Ravens made a trip to Miami to face the 0-13 Dolphins.
In an NFL year that has the New England Patriots going for the perfect season, the Dolphins were trying to avoid their own brand of perfection and it looks like the Ravens were just what the Doctor ordered. After getting the game to overtime, thanks to a suspect field goal call by Ravens coach Brian Billick, the Dolphins had dodged another bullet as Ravens kicker Matt Stover missed a 44-yard kick that would’ve given the game to Baltimore. On the following possession, Miami canceled their date with history when Cleo Lemon hit Greg Camarillo with a short pass.
Camarillo handled the rest, going 64 yards for the touchdown, giving the Fins their first win of the season. Baltimore, on the other hand, fell to 4-10 as they lost their eighth game in a row. What’s next for the Ravens? Do they stick with Heisman winner, Troy Smith to see if he’s the quarterback of the future or does Billick run back and give Kyle Boller yet another chance to fail? Over at the Baltimore Beatdown blog, Maxx has some ideas:
“However, if your coach doesn’t have the gonads to go for the game winning TD that sits six inches away, then he’ll never make a good decision like that, unless Boller’s concussion is such that won’t allow him to play next week and the choice is made for Billick.”
Evidently, the Ravens fanbase isn’t satisfied either. Congrats Baltimore, you’re this week’s Weekly Pwnage award recipient and a strong candidate for our Player of the Weak award as well. I’ll leave with the YouTube of Camarillo’s game-winning touchdown, which I found at Awful Announcing.