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Rants and Raves: Batted balls deflate final drive

Sep. 22, 2013
 

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Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has a pass knocked down by Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap in the second half of Sunday's game in Cincinnati. / AP

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Rant: The Bengals’ defensive ends are tall — 6-feet-7 and 6-6 — and their three batted balls at the line of scrimmage — two by Carlos Dunlap and one by Michael Johnson — on the Packers’ final drive proved the difference.

Rave: None of the three Bengals the Packers’ defense had to worry about most — A.J. Green, Jermaine Gresham and Tyler Eifert — played a big role. The Packers’ secondary held them mostly in check, allowing a combined nine catches on 15 targets for 80 yards and a touchdown.

Rant: The Packers forced turnovers on four straight possessions in the first half, but came away with only three points on the first two. On the possession after the second turnover, a drop by Andrew Quarless, a holding penalty by David Bakhtiari and a sack given up by Bakhtiari drove the Packers back 15 yards and forced them to punt.

Rave: A training camp focus on turnovers paid off as the Packers forced five fumbles, recovering three, and had an interception. In the first two games, Green Bay’s defense had only one turnover.

Rant: The Packers’ defense gave up a 95-yard, fourth-quarter scoring drive to allow the Bengals back in the game. Tramon Williams was guilty of a 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty, then got beat on an 11-yard TD pass to Marvin Jones.

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If you've ever answered "Who has the ball?" with "It's halftime," you might recognize The Airhead. Check out the characters in our cartoon gallery of oddball fans.

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