Green helps Bengals to 22-7 win
Bengals receiver A.J. Green followed his disappointing game with a dominating one — 10 catches for 173 yards and a touchdown — and a Cincinnati defense that was inspired by Vontaze Burfict’s return clamped down on the Miami Dolphins for a 22-7 victory Thursday night.
The Bengals (3-1) rebounded from a 29-17 home loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday with a solid all-around game against a depleted team.
Green led the way, beating the Dolphins (1-3) on every type of route, and easing the sting of dropping a pivotal third-down pass and failing to make an impact against the Broncos.
During the first three quarters, Green had 166 yards on catches while Miami had 152 total yards. The Bengals’ seasonlong problem of stalling out near the goal line forced them to settle for Mike Nugent’s season-high five field goals.
The Dolphins were missing four starting offensive linemen, two linebackers, running back Arian Foster and tight end Jordan Cameron. They had one big play — Ryan Tannehill threw a 74-yard touchdown pass to Kenny Stills — but couldn’t do anything else on offense.
The Bengals defense expected to get a lift from Burfict’s return. The volatile linebacker was suspended by the NFL for the first three games because of his illegal hits. He got a loud ovation when he ran onto the field during introductions wearing a baseball cap. Burfict knocked down a pass and had three tackles. Rehab for Gordon: Josh Gordon isn’t going back onto the field until he gets a tighter grip on his life.
The suspended Browns wide receiver said Thursday he’s entering rehab and putting his career on hold.
Gordon was eligible to return from his latest fourgame suspension next week and possibly play Oct. 9 against the Patriots.
However, the troubled 25-year-old’s future is again uncertain after he chose to seek professional help.
Gordon, who has been suspended for 30 of Cleveland’s past 35 games, did not indicate why he’s seeking treatment. Stewart out again: Panthers coach Ron Rivera said running back Jonathan Stewart will miss his second straight game with a hamstring injury. Cameron Artis-Payne will start at running back, and Fozzy Whittaker will be used as a change-of-pace back. Watt has surgery: A person familiar with J.J. Watt’s condition says the Texans’ star defensive lineman had back surgery Thursday and it is expected to miss the rest of the season.
The person spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team hasn’t announced the surgery. Extra points: Cowboys defensive end Randy Gregory was officially suspended 10 games for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy. He dropped a suspension appeal two weeks ago. … Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (knee) said he “feels great” and that there is no doubt he will play Sunday. … Bears quarterback Jay Cutler (right thumb sprain) did not practice after being limited Wednesday.