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Bengals bound for AFC Championship with win over Titans

This is the first AFC title game for the Bengals in 33 years.
Credit: AP Photo/Mark Humphrey
Cincinnati Bengals kicker Evan McPherson (2) celebrates his game-winning field goal against the Tennessee Titans after an NFL divisional round playoff football game, Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. The Cincinnati Bengals won 19-16.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Cincinnati Bengals defeated the Tennessee Titans by a score of 19-16 in the AFC Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs on Saturday to advance to the AFC title game.

The contest was relatively low-scoring in the first half, with the Bengals leading 9-6 at the break.

The game was tied at 16 going into the fourth quarter.

Bengals safety Jessie Bates III intercepted Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill late in the game which helped set up a game-winning 52-yeard field goal by Cincinnati's rookie kicker Evan McPherson.

 A week after ending a 31-year playoff victory drought, the Bengals finally won their first road game in the postseason after losing their first seven.

Bengals quarterback and Athens County native Joe Burrow threw for 348 yards, zero touchdowns and one interception.

The Titans sacked Burrow nine times, which tied an NFL postseason record.

Saturday's win means the Bengals will play the winner of Sunday's game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Buffalo Bills for the AFC title.

The last time the Bengals made it to the AFC Championship game was the 1988-89 season, when they defeated the Buffalo Bills on Jan. 8, 1989.  The San Francisco 49ers defeated the Bengals in the Super Bowl that season.

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