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Bengals all abuzz as rest of AFC North loses

TAMPA, Fla. -- Observed and heard in the locker room after the Cincinnati Bengals' 14-13 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers:

Manning the phones: As reporters walked into the Bengals' stuffy, narrow locker room inside Raymond James Stadium, right offensive tackle Marshall Newhouse looked up from his phone and shouted to teammates: "San Diego just went ahead." A chorus of oohs and ahhs went up from the nearby lockers. Moments after Eddie Royal caught a 1-yard touchdown pass from Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers in Baltimore, the Bengals were pleased to find out their division lead was about to be extended. After 38 more game seconds ticked off without a Ravens score, it was official. The Bengals' lead over the rest of the AFC North had just swelled to one-and-a-half games on a weekend when the rest of the division lost.

Bengals spot pivotal penalty: Bengals coach Marvin Lewis acknowledged he shouldn't have thrown his challenge flag to dispute a potential Buccaneers substitution infraction with 26 seconds remaining, but he was just trying to get the clock stopped as quickly as he could. In his ears, assistant coaches were going ballistic complaining that Tampa Bay had one too many players on the field during a 21-yard pass that easily put the Buccaneers in field goal position. Running back Jeremy Hill said running backs coach Kyle Caskey told him he spotted the penalty that the replay booth later enforced. "Stuff like that that goes unnoticed, the coaches in the box down to Marvin, that's huge," Hill said. "That's what won us the game." Defensive end Wallace Gilberry also said he and a few other Bengals defenders noticed too many men on the field and complained to officials even before Lewis threw his challenge flag.

Peko to get MRI: Defensive tackle Domata Peko left the game near halftime with a left elbow injury. He will get an MRI on Monday, although Peko doesn't seem to think he has anything to worry about. He said as much after the game, expressing optimism about playing again next week. After getting dressed in a suit and tie, Peko was spotted wearing a sling around his left arm.