NFL: LA Rams 24 Cincinnati Bengals 10
PUBLISHED: 05:52 28 October 2019 | UPDATED: 05:52 28 October 2019
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The Los Angeles Rams claimed victory in the third match of this year’s NFL International Series in London on Sunday.
Oakland Raiders and Carolina Panthers had won earlier fixtures at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, with the Rams claiming their victory at Wembley Stadium.
The Bengals, looking for their first win of the season, received the opening kick-off and made two first downs, one a run the other a pass, but punted from near midfield.
Los Angeles moved the ball from their own 10-yard line to the Cincinnati five, but had to settle for 23-yard field goal from Greg Zuerlein.
However, on the drive, leading receiver Brandin Cooks received head injury and was out for the game.
Bengals' second possession saw a long pass from Andy Dalton to Tyler Eifert and two more passes got the ball to the Rams 8-yard line, before a penalty led to the quarter ending on fourth down.
The first play of the second quarter was a 28-yard field goal from Randy Bullock to make it 3-3.
Three penalty flags on Rams' second drive were only a minor inconvenience as Jared Goff found huge holes on the Bengals' pass coverage.
His last pass was 31 yards to a wide-open Josh Reynolds who trotted into the endzone for a touchdown, improved by Zuerlein to make the score 10-3.
The Bengals response was immediate as good runs from Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard sets up one-yard pass from Andy Dalton to Mixon and, after Bullock converted the extra point, the game was tied again at 10-10.
Parity lasted all of three plays as Goff threw a 65-yard pass to Cooper Kupp.
BW Webb fell down in coverage and could not recover in time to stop the wideout going to the endzone and Zuerlein's kick made it 17-10 with 3.57 left in the first half.
Cincinnati's next possession started promisingly, but two incomplete passes from Dalton and a sack meant they punted.
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The Rams escaped from their own two-yard line thanks a good run by Todd Gurley, but they eventually punted from their own 38-yard line to end the half.
Los Angeles received the second-half kick-off and Goff threw two long passes, the second one to Kupp, leaving the Rams on Cincinnati's 15, from where Gurley ran for nine, two and four yards to stretch the lead to 24-10.
Cincinnati again failed to get into field-goal range and had to punt. Summing up their ineptitude, on a third-down pass, Dalton's pass was batted back to him and he was then tackled for a loss. Officially, the pass was Dalton to Dalton for a loss of three yards.
Rams moved the ball 40 yards downfield but had to punt from their own 37 as the quarter ended with Bengals on their own 24-yard line and the final quarter started with an incomplete pass and a sack, which meant another punt for Cincinnati.
Rams also had to punt again and the next two possessions ended in the same fashion.
Finally, the Bengals moved the ball downfield, converting two fourth-down plays to set up a first and goal with six minutes to play.
Giovani Bernard ran for two yards, then Dalton threw two incompletions to set up a third fourth-down play on the drive. This time it came up short and the Rams took over on downs on their own three-yard line.
Two runs gave the Rams a first down and, after another run, the Bengals took their last timeout.
Burning the clock, the Rams didn't quite make it to the two-minute warning, but once the punt return was completed 1.53 remained and the Bengals started on their own 16-yard line, needing to score two touchdowns to tie the game.
Cincinnati spent an age throwing short passes before launching a 50-yarder to the Rams' 18-yard line. Although he finished with more than 300 yards of passing, Dalton didn't find the endzone, finding Eifert on the four-yard line with 15 seconds remaining.
Dalton stopped the clock with 11 seconds to go and threw an incompletion. After a false start, Auden Tate appeared to catch a four-yard pass, replays showed he didn't keep control of the ball and the touchdown was overturned. Another incompletion ended the game and Cincinnati dropped to 0-8, while the Rams improved to 5-3.
The star men were all wearing blue. Goff threw for 372 yards and two touchdowns; Kupp caught seven passes for 220 yards and a touchdown, Gurley ran for one; the Rams defence allowed one touchdown and sacked Dalton five times - the quarterback's 327 yards passing were largely when the game was lost and the Rams allowed short passes.
Next week, Houston and Jacksonville meet at Wembley Stadium for a lunchtime kick-off (1.30pm GMT).
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