Bengals’ must stop another Manning

Published 1:45 am Thursday, November 8, 2012

CINCINNATI (AP) — Peyton Manning came to town last weekend and had his way, sending the Bengals to their fourth straight loss by throwing three touchdown passes.

Now, it’s little brother’s turn to try to push Cincinnati one loss closer to a lost season.

Eli Manning and the New York Giants (6-3) come to Paul Brown Stadium on Sunday looking to extend the family’s history of success against Cincinnati. Peyton improved to 8-0 against the Bengals by leading Denver to a 31-23 win last Sunday.

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Eli is 1-1 career against the Bengals (3-5), who have lost their last three home games.

“This week with this Manning, we’ve got to do those things we didn’t do last week with the last Manning,” defensive end Carlos Dunlap said.

The back-to-back visits by the Mannings were set up by the schedule rotation. The NFC East plays the AFC North this season, giving Eli a chance to face Cincinnati. And the AFC North plays the AFC West, Peyton’s new place.

And they’re taking full advantage.

Peyton and Eli talked by phone on Tuesday about their most recent games — the Giants lost to Pittsburgh at home on Sunday afternoon. Peyton shared some of his firsthand insights into the Bengals defense, which couldn’t hold a fourth-quarter lead.

“So, Eli, we’ve been resources for each other,” Peyton said. “And certainly I pull hard for him and keep up with him and we encourage each other.”

The two of them talk a couple of times each week, soon after the last game and then again a few days before the next one. They catch up on their personal lives and trade tips and ideas about the teams they’ll be playing.

Their back-to-back games against the Bengals gave Peyton a chance to provide an in-depth scouting report.

“We have a little bit different style of offense, but there always might be a tip or two that you might have eventually found but coming in, you can look for certain things,” Eli said Wednesday on a conference call. “So we definitely talked a little bit.”

What they shared stayed private, but some of it isn’t hard to guess: Watch out for cornerback Terence Newman and expect a better effort out of a defensive line that hardly even touched Peyton.

The Broncos quarterback threw a pair of interceptions — both to Newman, one of them in the end zone — that helped the Bengals pull ahead early in the fourth quarter. Peyton pulled it out with his 48th game-winning drive, the most in NFL history.

The Bengals didn’t sack Peyton and hardly touched him with their four-man rush.

“If you look at Peyton’s career, he never gets touched,” Dunlap said. “That’s Peyton. His scheme is for him to never touch the ground. We still want to get to him and get him down and touch him, but I didn’t really get a lick on him.

“Last week we didn’t get to Peyton, and this week we’ll do everything we can to get to Eli.”

Defensive tackle Geno Atkins put it more bluntly.

“We have to get after the quarterback,” Atkins said. “We didn’t do that the last game, but this game there’s going to be an emphasis on trying to rattle him.”

The Broncos and Giants run different types of offenses. Peyton makes more decisions at the line of scrimmage and gets rid of the ball fast. Eli’s Giants take more chances with the long pass, leaving the quarterback in play a few seconds longer.

Newman, who faced Eli regularly when he played in the same division with the Cowboys, sees similarities between him and his brother.

“He’s like any great quarterback,” Newman said. “You’ve got Peyton, you’ve got Tom Brady, you’ve got Drew Brees. Those guys study the game. They know how to get the ball out. They’re not just going to drop back and say ‘Hey, I’m going to go to this guy.’ They know where to put the football, and when to deliver it.

“He’s got all those qualities.”


NOTES: C Jeff Faine (hamstring) didn’t practice Wednesday and C Trevor Robinson (hamstring) was limited. Coach Marvin Lewis expects both of them to practice on a limited basis Thursday. They had to share time against the Broncos because of their injuries. … RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis was sick and missed practice. … The game against the Giants hasn’t sold out. The Bengals sold out their first three home games, one more than last season.


AP Pro Football Writer Arnie Stapleton in Englewood, Colo., contributed to this report.


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