Five snapshots from the Dolphins-Bengals series.
December 23, 1973
The playoff run that led the Dolphins to their second consecutive Super Bowl title in 1973 began with a game against the Bengals at the Orange Bowl. The Dolphins took a 21-16 into halftime before pulling away to a 34-16 victory. The running game led the way, as the Dolphins rushed for 241 yards on 52 attempts. Mercury Morris led the team with 106 yards and a touchdown, while Larry Csonka had 71 yards and a score.
September 14, 1980
Though it’s probably not as well known as it should be, what the Dolphins pulled off in a 1980 game against the Bengals at the Orange Bowl has to go down as one of the most memorable plays in franchise history. The onside punt. Not onside kick. Onside punt. The Dolphins were in trouble on that September day after a safety gave Cincinnati a 16-7 lead with only 6:12 remaining in the fourth quarter, but Hall of Fame Coach Don Shula then came up with a stroke of genius. When George Roberts set up for free kick following the safety, the Bengals had no clue he was going to softly punt it forward, much like an onside kick. Defensive back Jeff Allen recovered the loose ball at the Dolphins 35-yard line to set the stage for a stirring comeback in a 17-16 victory.
October 2, 1994
The Dolphins-Bengals battle of Oct. 2, 1994 wasn’t particularly memorable for what happened in the game, but it was a historic game nonetheless because it marked the first time in the history of the four major North American professional sports leagues that a father had faced his son as head coaches. Don Shula got the better of David Shula in that Sunday night game, 23-7, thanks to two touchdown passes by Dan Marino and three field goals by Pete Stoyanovich.
October 1, 2000
The game at Cincinnati on Oct. 1, 2000 provided what may have been the signature play of Jason Taylor’s Hall of Fame career. It came on the last play of a miserable first half for the Dolphins, who trailed 13-3 with 8 seconds left. With Cincinnati having a second-and-5 from its 37-yard line, the logical thing would have been for the Bengals to simply kneel and take their 10-point lead into the locker room. But they got greedy, and Taylor made them pay for it. Quarterback Akili Smith dropped back to pass, and Taylor hit him from behind, stole the ball from him and ran back the fumble 29 yards for a touchdown as time ran out in the first half. The play woke up the Dolphins, who outscored Cincinnati 21-3 in the second half for a 31-16 victory.
October 31, 2013
From one great Dolphins pass rusher to another, we move to the Wake-off. That’s how the game of Halloween night 2013 in Miami came to be known after Cameron Wake sacked Andy Dalton in the end zone in overtime to give the Dolphins a 22-20 victory. It marked the third time in NFL history an overtime game had ended with a safety. Earlier in the game, Dolphins cornerback Brent Grimes had returned an interception 94 yards for a touchdown.