In Week 17, the game between the Cincinnati Bengals and Buffalo Bills was suspended, and later cancelled, after Damar Hamlin’s scary collapse on the field. The Bengals were leading 7-3 at the time in the first quarter. They could have very well gone on to win.
The Bengals finally finished what they started against the Bills, winning by a score of 27-10 in the Divisional Round. Cincinnati never trailed throughout the game and proved to be the much better team on Sunday.
Cincinnati opened the game with a touchdown. Joe Burrow found former LSU-teammate Ja’Marr Chase for a 28-yard catch-and-run score. They were not playing around.
After a quick three-and-out for Buffalo, the Bengals put together another scoring drive. Burrow connected with tight end Hayden Hurst for a 15-yard touchdown at the end of the first quarter. They went into halftime with a 17-7 lead, with Buffalo’s lone score coming from an Allen QB sneak from the one-yard line.
The second half was still all Bengals. They put up another 10 points on their first two drives of the second half. The Bengals were sitting pretty with a 27-10 lead, one which the Bills could not overcome.
Burrow finished the game 23 of 36 for 242 yards and two touchdowns. Joe Mixon tallied 105 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Chase was the leading receiver, catching five balls for 61 yards and a score.
For Buffalo, Allen completed 25 of 42 passed for 264 yards and an interception. The Bills did not muster up success on the ground, as they combined for a total of 64 rushing yards. Star WR Stefon Diggs had a pedestrian performance with only four catches for 35 yards.
AFC Championship Game
The NFL already sold more than 50,000 tickets for a neutral site Bills vs. Chiefs AFC Championship Game in Atlanta. The Bengals, however, had other plans. Cincinnati will travel to Kansas City for a rematch of last season’s AFCGC, where the Bengals won on a game-winning field goal in overtime.
Joe Burrow is 3-0 against Patrick Mahomes, who suffered a high ankle injury in their win against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Saturday. This matchup will be guaranteed to have fireworks, as it will feature the last two AFC representatives for the Super Bowl.
Clearly, last season’s Bengals were not a fluke or a one-year wonder. They have established themselves as one of the beasts of the AFC. While the Bills were preseason favorites to win the Super Bowl, the Bengals may have leapfrogged them in terms of conference powerhouses.
Photo Credit: Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK