Dalton overcomes picks, pain to lead Bengals to win

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton, left, passes in the first half of an NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills, Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)
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Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton, left, passes in the first half of an NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills, Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton threw his first two interceptions since tossing four in the season opener against Baltimore, but he was able to laugh about it after rallying the team to a 20-16 win against Buffalo on Sunday at Paul Brown Stadium.

Both of Dalton’s interceptions actually hit usually reliable wide receiver A.J. Green in the hands.

“I just told him the good thing about it is, it doesn’t end up on his stats, it ends up on mine,” Dalton joked afterward.

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Dalton finished 22 of 36 for 328 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. It was his first 300-yard game of the season and 22nd of his career, leaving him one shy of Boomer Esiason for the franchise record.

The performance came after Dalton suffered an ankle injury with 11:10 left in the second quarter. Buffalo defensive tackle Cedric Thornton came up the middle on a rush, and Dalton rolled his left ankle trying to escape the pressure.

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He got the ankle taped at halftime and was noticeably limping the rest of the game, but he tried to downplay it after the game.

“I just wanted to keep trying to walk off it and hopefully it would feel better,” he said. “And it did. I got it taped up and was good to go.”

Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis praised Dalton’s effort.

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“He really fought through it and did a good job,” Lewis said. “He overcame some pain and stayed in the football game.”

It was the 23rd time in Dalton’s career he’s thrown at least two interceptions. The Bengals are 10-12-1 in those games.

And given that the Bengals were down after three quarters, it was the 15th fourth-quarter comeback and 18th game-winning drive of Dalton’s career.

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