Hue Jackson put pressure on Bengals' O-line

CINCINNATI -- Observed and heard in the locker room after the Cincinnati Bengals' 27-24 win over the Baltimore Ravens:

  • Putting pressure on the line: After an abysmal offensive performance last week at Indianapolis (12 rushes for 32 yards), Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson wanted to ensure his unit would be more physical Sunday against the Ravens. In the days leading up to the game, he raised the pressure on his offensive line. "Hue called us out all week and said this was going to be up to us," Pro Bowl left tackle Andrew Whitworth told ESPN.com after the game. "He said we were going to win or lose the game based off of how physical we could be up front." The Bengals rushed for 111 yards on 34 carries and plowed behind the line on Andy Dalton's game-winning 1-yard quarterback sneak.

  • End drives with kicks: Head coach Marvin Lewis was notably more relieved during Sunday's postgame than he had been at any point all week. During his news conference, he shared the discussion he had with Dalton coming out of halftime. It was the same message he would have shared going into the Bengals' final drive had he spoken to Dalton: "[Former Ohio State coach] Jim Tressel told me this a long time ago: If each possession ends in your kick, you'll be in good shape. That's your job as a quarterback -- make your possession end in a kick."

  • Iloka defends penalty: As reporters huddled around him in the locker room after the win, safety George Iloka defended the offensive pass interference call that negated a potential Ravens touchdown on Baltimore's final drive of the game. "Why would I fall this way?" Iloka asked rhetorically as he stepped backward into his locker. "I was just getting ready for a jump ball, and I wasn't allowed to jump with whatever [receiver Steve Smith] did. It knocked me off." Before the flag was thrown, Smith got separation before catching the ball and finishing off an 80-yard touchdown reception with 32 seconds left. The flag pushed the Ravens back to their 10, two plays before a turnover on downs.

  • "No excuses": According to linebacker Vontaze Burfict, who spoke very briefly at his locker after the game, the motto of the day for the Bengals' defense was: "No excuses." "We played all together," he said. "There was no finger-pointing. Everybody was accountable." During the Bengals' three-game winless streak, some defenders had literally been seen pointing fingers at others who didn't fulfill certain responsibilities after key plays.