Niners Defeat Bengals after Brandon Aiyuk's Walk Off TD!
After a Bengals FG saw them take the lead early in the overtime period, the Niners marched back down the field on a drive led by QB Jimmy Garropolo and All-Pro TE George Kittle. Kittle, who finished the day with 13 receptions for 151 yards and a TD, made multiple catches on the final drive to set up WR Brandon Aiyuk's game-winning touchdown. Aiyuk came in motion, catching the pass in the flat before diving over the pylon to win the game.
The win sees the Niners improve to 7-6 while the Bengals fall to 7-6, still a game behind the AFC North division leader Baltimore Ravens.
Offensively, the game was dominated by the pass-game. WR Deebo Samuel turned the corner in the 2nd quarter for his 6th rushing TD of the year. Kittle was available over the middle all game, adding a spectacular catch with under two minutes to go to set up the Niners for a game-winning field goal, which was pushed wide right by K Robbie Gould.
The Bengals torched the Niners' secondary on deep routes throughout the afternoon. WR Tee Higgins finished with 144 yards while WR Jamar Chase added 77 yards and two touchdowns.
Special teams proved to be an issue for both squads, with the Bengals muffing multiple punts and the Niners missing multiple field goals. The third phase has been a source of headaches for Niners HC Kyle Shanahan all season long. After allowing a fake punt to go 73 yards last week in Seattle, the Niners' special teams did just enough to help the Niners earn a road win.
Jimmy Garropolo threw for one of his better games of the year, completing more than 65% of his passes, throwing for 2 touchdowns and 296 yards. Garropolo's subpar play has often held the Niners back. Other than a dropped pick-6 by Bengals S Jessie Bates, Garraopolo was solid throughout the afternoon.
Niners In the hunt
A scrappy win for the Niners in Cincinnati gets them one step closer to securing their place in the postseason. At 7-6, two more wins out of their remaining four games (ATL, @TEN, HOU, @LAR) should be enough to see them clinch a postseason birth.
As for the Bengals, the overtime loss drops them to 7-6 after starting the year a promising 5-2. The AFC North is still very much in play for the Bengals after Baltimore's loss Sunday to the Cleveland Browns, with the Ravens dropping to 8-5.