partlycloudy
Tuesday May 5th, 2015 11:20AM

Bengals put on a show in preseason win over Falcons

By The Associated Press
ATLANTA -- Giovani Bernard scored in his opening bid for a share of the Bengals' carries, while Steven Jackson was provided little running room by the Falcons' depleted offensive line as Cincinnati rolled to a 34-10 preseason win over Atlanta on Thursday night.

Josh Johnson, who directed two second-quarter touchdown drives, made big plays as a passer and runner as he opened the competition for the Bengals' backup quarterback job.

Bernard, a second-round pick from North Carolina, played behind returning starter Benjarvus Green-Ellis and had 10 carries for 28 yards, including a 1-yard touchdown run. He added three catches for 16 yards.

Johnson, going against John Skelton for the backup job behind Andy Dalton, passed for 100 yards, including a 21-yard touchdown to Brandon Tate, and ran for 64 yards.

Dane Sanzenbacher had a 71-yard punt return for a touchdown and a 36-yard scoring catch from Skelton.

Green-Ellis had three carries for 14 yards. Johnson was 9 of 16 for 100 yards with one touchdown.

The first preseason game highlighted the Falcons' concerns about their rebuilt offensive line. Jackson found little blocking as he had five carries for only 8 yards.

Atlanta lost projected starting right tackle Mike Johnson, likely for the season, when he dislocated his left ankle and broke his left leg in Tuesday's practice.

Lamar Holmes, a second-year player who appeared in only one game in 2012, moved up as the starting right tackle. Undrafted rookie Ryan Schraeder played behind Holmes. The Falcons released right tackle Tyson Clabo after the 2012 season and longtime starting center Todd McClure retired.

Johnson led the Bengals to 17 second-quarter points. Following his scoring pass to Tate, Johnson directed a second touchdown drive capped by Bernard's 1-yard run.

Lined up deep in the I-formation, Bernard showed his explosiveness by quickly building his speed even before taking the handoff from Johnson and then running straight ahead for the touchdown with 2 seconds remaining in the half.

The Falcons had a fast start. Matt Ryan was 3 for 3 for 52 yards on Atlanta's opening drive, his first with Jackson at running back. Jackson, the former Rams standout, was signed to replace Michael Turner.

On the first play of the game, Jackson ran straight ahead, found no room and cut right for 4 yards. It was his longest run of the night.

Harry Douglas turned a screen pass from Ryan into a 42-yard gain, but the drive stalled when Geno Atkins stuffed Jackson on third-and-2 run from the 16, forcing the Falcons to settle for Matt Bryant's 37-yard field goal.

Ryan remained in the game for two more series. He completed 6 of 9 passes for 89 yards.

Dalton played only two possessions and went 3 of 7 for 36 yards.

Dominique Davis, mostly ineffective after replacing Ryan in the first half, led a third-quarter touchdown drive capped by his 8-yard pass to Jason Snelling. Davis hit 8 of 19 for 78 yards with one touchdown and one interception.

Skelton took over for Johnson late in the third quarter and led a 78-yard touchdown drive finished off with his 36-yard scoring pass to Sanzenbacher, a third-year player who had only one catch in 2012.
© Copyright 2015 AccessNorthGa.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Bartus, Icemen shuts out Gwinnett
Garrett Bartus pitched a 42 save shutout, as the Evansville IceMen topped the Gwinnett Gladiators on a New year
10:23PM ( 1 year ago )
Gator Bowl Preview Capsule
A rematch of last year's Capital One Bowl, which Georgia won 45-31 in Orlando.
8:52PM ( 1 year ago )
Millsap's 34 leads Hawks past Celtics
Paul Millsap had season highs with 34 points and 15 rebounds as the Hawks rallied from an 18-point deficit for a 92-91 win over the Boston Celtics on Tuesday afternoon.
7:44PM ( 1 year ago )
Sports
Falcons fire offensive, defensive line coaches
The Atlanta Falcons have fired defensive line coach Ray Hamilton and offensive line coaches Pat Hill and Paul Dunn.
7:02PM ( 1 year ago )
Best, worst of Falcons' 4-12 season
Best Game: They'd been eliminated from playoff contention previous week vs. New Orleans, but the Falcons showed some heart with Dec. 1 overtime victory over Bills in Toronto.
6:21PM ( 1 year ago )
Gonzalez's career ends with another Falcons loss
Tony Gonzalez is ready for the next chapter of his life.
9:47PM ( 1 year ago )
Professional Sports
Baseball: Area teams head to 2nd round with momentum
Area teams caught some big breaks, others made their own, and one, Jackson County, made history in the first round of the state baseball playoffs...
5:31PM ( 6 hours from now )
Gainesville Schools taps Centennial High's Kirk to take over system-wide AD position
At Monday night's school board work session, Gainesville City School Superintendent Wanda Creel introduced the school system's new Director of Athletics and Student Activities.
3:11AM ( 8 hours ago )
Boys golf: 8-AAAA sends three into state tourney with strong showing at Sectionals
Region 8-AAAA had a strong showing Monday at the Class AAAA boys North Sectionals at Applewood Golf Club.
By AccessWDUN staff
2:05AM ( 9 hours ago )
TIPOFF: Wizards look to keep up their winning ways on road
Over the last two years, the Wizards have been the ultimate road warriors in the playoffs, winning eight of nine games away from D.C. and becoming the first team in NBA history to capture four straight Game 1s in the other team's arena.
12:22AM ( 10 hours ago )
Alex Wood struggles again as Braves fall to Phillies, 5-2
Alex Wood's second straight poor start has the young Atlanta left-hander wondering how he can reclaim the form that made his 2014 rookie season a success.
12:20AM ( 11 hours ago )