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Bills erase 31-14 deficit to crush Bengals

CINCINNATI - Down 31-14 at halftime, the one-win Bills got angry.

Angry at the officials for giving Cincinnati another play to kick a field goal. Angry at themselves for getting in such a big hole in front of such a small crowd.

Angry enough to pull off their best comeback in 13 years.

Ryan Fitzpatrick threw four touchdown passes as the Bills rallied Sunday for their second straight win, 49-31, over the bumbling Bengals.

"We could've easily folded our tent," said cornerback Drayton Florence, who returned a fumble 27 yards during the comeback. "It looked like they folded their tents on their sideline."

Buffalo (2-8) took advantage of Cincinnati's depleted secondary for its biggest comeback since it erased a 26-0 deficit to beat the Colts, 37-35, on Sept. 21, 1997, according to STATS LLC.

The turning point came at the end of the half, when the clock ran out but the officials ruled Cincinnati had called timeout with 1 second to go. The Bengals then kicked a field goal. The Bills complained to the officials while running off the field, then vented to each other.

Fitzpatrick took advantage of a defense down to four healthy defensive backs by game's end. Steve Johnson caught three touchdown passes, including an 11-yarder that put Buffalo ahead 35-31 early in the fourth. Johnson made eight catches for 137 yards.

With the collapse, the Bengals (2-8) secured their 18th non-winning record in the last 20 years. The only bright side: Cincinnati fans didn't get to see it on local television. The Bengals failed to sell out a home game for the first time since 2003.

"We are terrible," receiver Terrell Owens said, taking off his sunglasses for emphasis.

The futility was felt all-around. One fan in a Bengals jersey wore a bag over his head that said "Bungles." Next to him sat a fan in an old Doug Flutie Bills jersey, wearing a bag over his head that said "Jills." Leading up to the game, Owens dubbed it "the battle of the worst."

On this day, Cincinnati earned the distinction.

New York Sports