Unbeaten Cincinnati Bengals still searching for true identity

Behind Enemy Lines Zrebiec Morrison offer opposing insight into Bengals-Ravens

Then it was the tough running of Joe Mixon, who twice left the game with a knee injury.

The Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals opened week two of the National Football League season with a Bengals win at home on Thursday night.

SEEING GREEN: Green set a career high with his touchdown catches of 4, 32 and 7 yards.

Two games does not make a season, but it certainly can help erase the stinging memories of the previous year. It harassed Joe Flacco early and often and came up with just enough big plays late to hang on.

With Smith serving the second game of a four-game suspension, the Ravens' secondary was victimized for four first-half touchdown passes, including three to receiver A.J. Green.

Browns to release Josh Gordon
He first was suspended in 2014, and did not play again until November 2017, when he was reinstated on a conditional basis. Gordon is a dynamic player when on the field, but he has also been extremely problematic away from it.

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Browns are releasing Josh Gordon
Gordon was ruled out for Sunday's game with the New Orleans Saints with a hamstring injury and did not travel with the team. He will finish his Browns career with his final catch as a touchdown against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Week 1 tie.

The Ravens played most of the night without linebacker C.J. Mosley, who bruised his knee in the first quarter. Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton attributed the win to a strong start, clearly, but it was also a strong performance Dalton and company kept up through the next three quarters that put the Ravens' comeback to bed. He finished the game 24-of-42 passing for 265 yards.

But the Ravens made it interesting after looking completely washed early. The Bengals did let the Ravens stop them on a few drives offensively and defensively gave up a few plays till the Ravens just gave up in the last two minutes.

All the pieces relating to the fourth quarter Thursday evening screamed that the Bengals had been going to blow it.

Last year, the offense failed to score a touchdown while losing the first two games to Baltimore and Houston, putting their season on a bad course. It was the fourth time he's thrown four touchdown passes in a game. Atkins was a force in the interior, racking up two sacks and several quarterback pressures, at times making All-Pro guard Marshal Yanda look silly. The defensive line didn't miss a beat after starting defensive end Michael Johnson went down with an injury, and Hubbard stepped up with a key sack and tackle for loss. Alex Collins had only 13 touches but made the majority with some nifty tackle-shaking moves en route to 90 yards from scrimmage, including a career-best 55 receiving. His last was a pinpoint 21-yard throw to Brown, who climbed over cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick in the near corner of the end zone for a touchdown that seemed to deaden the announced 50,018 in Paul Brown Stadium.

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