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Bengals embarrass Vikings, hand Purple largest loss of year

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In a season full of lows, a new standard of futility was set for the Purple, as they were pounded by Cincinnati 42-14 at Paul Brown Stadium Sunday.

The 28-point loss is the largest of the year for the Vikings, topping their 25-point loss to Carolina at the Metrodome in Week 6 of the year.

Early on it looked as if Minnesota would keep it close with the playoff-bound Bengals, as the two teams traded touchdowns inside of five minutes into the contest.

But with the score tied at seven, Cincinnati rattled off five straight touchdowns fueled by four Minnesota turnovers, to mount an insurmountable 42-7 advantage.

Minnesota would get a 35-yard touchdown run late in the third-quarter from the only bright spot in the game for the Purple, Cordarrelle Patterson, but that would conclude the scoring on a lackluster offensive day for the Vikings.

Andy Dalton led the Bengals offensively, passing for 366 yards and four scores, while running back Benjarvus Green-Ellis added a score and linebacker Vincent Rey brought back an interception for a touchdown.

Matt Cassel, who threw three picks Sunday, also fumbled, which led to Cincinnati's first touchdown, a four-yard run for Green-Ellis. He completed just 13 of his 27 passes.

Adrian Peterson, who played despite multiple lower-body injuries that kept him on the sidelines for most of practice this week, carried the ball just 11 times for 45 yards.

With the win, Cincinnati clinches the AFC North and a playoff spot, remaining perfect at home on the year.

The Vikings are now done on the road, and with the loss conclude the away portion of their schedule winless outside of the Metrodome. They play their final game of the season next week at home against the Lions, Minnesota's final game at the Dome.

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