The NFL couldn’t ask for a better start to Super Wild Card weekend.
Closing the action of the first round of the playoffs, the Cincinnati Bengals held off their division rival Baltimore Ravens after a last-second hail mary was nearly caught in the endzone.
The Bengals were seemingly about to be down 24-17 in the fourth quarter when Ravens quarterback Tyler Huntley attempted a goal-line dive to score. The ball was popped free, allowing defensive end Sam Hubbard to scoop and take off for a 98-yard return to score.
The Ravens would attempt to lead another drive but would stall out, forcing the team to launch the ball nearly 60 yards into the end zone. The pass was almost caught, but ultimately, the Ravens came up short.
The Bengals will now move on to play the Buffalo Bills in a rematch of the game that featured Damar Hamlin suffering cardiac arrest and being canceled.
The Bills had a touch match-up themselves. In a game where many expected the Bills to roll since the Miami Dolphins were without Tua Tagovailoa, they instead had to fight to the very end, squeaking out a 34-31 win.
The Bills would open the game 17-0 but only held a 20-17 lead going into halftime following a series of costly turnovers.
“I just think overall we’ve got to do a better job at that point, you know, up 17, I think it was 17-zip, and we turned the ball over, so at the end of the day, you turn the ball over, you die, normally, a pretty quick death,” Bills coach Sean McDermott said to ESPN. “I think we had three turnovers, one for a score, and then we had the big punt return mixed in there as well, so not very good complementary football.”
Allen still showed why he was elite, including a touchdown to Gabe Davis to secure the lead.
Daniel Jones elite? That’s what New York Giants’ SaQuon Barkley said after the Giants upset the two-seeded Minnesota Vikings in a 31-24 thriller.
Jones was the first quarterback in NFL history to have 300 passing yards, two passing touchdowns, and at least 70 rushing yards in a playoff game. The performance prompted elite calls from teammates.
“I know we have an elite quarterback,” Barkley said. “He’s shown that multiple times.”
Unfortunately for the Vikings, the team lost, as predicted by many who believed they worked their way through a cupcake schedule.
“Thirteen wins, I haven’t really sniffed that before,” Cousins said. “And just the fact that the group, the Garretts and the Alexes that … are free agents that are not guaranteed to be back, I think it’s hard to walk off the field.”
Cousins finished 31/39 with 273 yards and two touchdowns.
The Seattle Seahawks weren’t given much chance against the San Francisco 49ers, which held true. After a competitive first half, Niners rookie quarterback Brock Purdy dropped four touchdowns to lead San Francisco to a 41-23 win. Purdy finished 18-of-30 for 332 yards.
And the Chargers are going to Chargers. Once up 27-0 on Trevor Lawrence’s four first-half interceptions, the Los Angeles Chargers would only score three more points allowing a historic Jacksonville Jaguars comeback 30-27 victory.
The game ended on a last-second field goal from Riley Patterson, sending the Chargers home with calls for head coach Brandon Staley’s job.
The opening round of the playoffs will close with Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers against Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys.
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