CINCINNATI (AP) — Joe Burrow led an efficient offense that scored on six drives, including two of his touchdown passes, and rookie Evan McPherson made four field goals as the Cincinnati Bengals finally advanced in the playoffs with a 26-19 win over Las Vegas in Saturday’s wild-card game. It was a victory three decades in the making for the Bengals (11-7). After going from worst to first in the AFC North with a generally young roster, they ended an embarrassing long postseason drought that spanned 31 years and eight consecutive defeats. “Who Dey” indeed.
The playoff frustration continues for the Raiders. A season of tumult in Las Vegas could have been salved with the first playoff win in 19 years, but the Raiders couldn’t catch up with the Cincinnati Bengals, who ended an even longer playoff drought of their own. The most recent postseason win for the Raiders came in a conference championship game before they lost to Tampa Bay in the 2003 Super Bowl. Prior to Saturday, the organization had managed just one playoff appearance, a one-and-done wild-card game after the 2016 season. On Saturday, quarterback Derek Carr threw an interception on fourth down in the closing seconds to seal the 26-19 win for the Bengals.
A mostly tense game between teams with long playoff droughts was disrupted by some problematic officiating. The Bengals beat the Raiders 26-19 on Saturday in an AFC wild-card matchup that ended Cincinnati’s 31-year run without a postseason victory. The margin was Joe Burrow’s 10-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Boyd late in the second quarter on which the quarterback barely was in bounds when he threw the ball. But an official right at the sideline where Burrow threw appeared to blow his whistle while the ball was in the air. Players on the field for the Raiders protested a bit to no avail.