Boomer Esiason threw for two touchdowns and fullback Larry Kinnebrew ran for another as the Cincinnati Bengals beat the Buffalo Bills, 23-17, today in the National Football League.
Esiason, the AFC's highest-rated passer, threw a 68-yard touchdown pass to rookie Eddie Brown and a 22-yard scoring toss to tight end M.L. Harris as the Bengals improved their record to 4-5. Buffalo fell to 1-8.
Kinnebrew capped a 65-yard, six-minute drive in the fourth quarter by bowling over from the two.
"Brew's pretty good," Bengals offensive guard Max Montoya said of the 270-pound fullback, who gained 128 yards in 30 rushes in the pelting rain at Rich Stadium. "He's like a runaway beer truck."
"When the field is wet like this, you can run straight at them," said Kinnebrew, who made his first start after a hand injury that sidelined him for four games. "There's not too much cutting, and it's hard for the defense to get its footing."
Near the end of the second quarter, Esiason (11 for 21, 193 yards) rolled to his left and lofted a 68-yard scoring pass to Brown. The extra point was blocked by Buffalo's Sean McNanie.
Cincinnati took the lead at the end of a 91-yard, eight-minute drive midway through the third quarter. Faking an end around to Brown, Esiason found Harris all alone for a 22-yard touchdown pass.
In the fourth quarter, Kinnebrew's touchdown run and Jim Breech's 31-yard field goal completed Cincinnati's scoring.
For the Bills, scores came on a 14-yard touchdown run by Greg Bell, a 43-yard field goal by Scott Norwood and a five-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Bruce Mathison to tight end Eason Ramson with two seconds to play in the game. Mathison had replaced starter Vince Ferragamo in the fourth quarter.