Bengals' Taylor: Browning 'lit the world on fire' during standout MNF game
The Bengals needed a spark to save their season, and quarterback Jake Browning provided it during a near-flawless performance in Cincinnati's dramatic 34-31 overtime win Monday against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
"He just lit the world on fire," head coach Zac Taylor said. "At halftime, I wasn't sure if we had an incompletion, if the ball had hit the ground yet. I just thought he managed the game beautifully well. He was aggressive with some of his throws and did a great job making plays with his feet.
"Just really proud of Jake and the job he did," he added. "And the guys rallying around him, making plays for him, protecting him, run game getting going. It all helped Jake. Really proud of the team win, but really proud of Jake in his second career start to come out here on Monday Night Football and do what he did today is pretty cool."
Starting for the injured Joe Burrow, Browning emulated Cincinnati's ultra-poised franchise player by completing 32 of 37 passes for 354 yards with a touchdown while adding a rushing score.
The upset win puts the 6-6 Bengals back in the hunt for a wild-card spot. Cincinnati sits just one game behind the Pittsburgh Steelers, Indianapolis Colts, and Cleveland Browns, who currently occupy the fifth, sixth, and seventh seeds with 7-5 records.
The AFC postseason fight looks set to be intense down the stretch. The Bengals are one of three 6-6 clubs in the conference, along with the Buffalo Bills and Denver Broncos, while the 7-5 Houston Texans sit at No. 8.
Browning and the Bengals could greatly increase their playoff odds over the next three weeks, with matchups against the Colts in Week 14 and the Steelers in Week 16.