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Sports

Sports Report: Bengals Are 8-0 For First Time In Franchise History

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NFL:

On Thursday Night Football, the Cincinnati Bengals are 8-0 for the first time in franchise history following a dominant performance by Andy Dalton and some outstanding defense in the second half of a 31-10 win over Cleveland. Dalton was 21 of 27 for 234 yards and three touchdowns to Tyler Eifert. Cincinnati led just 14-10 at halftime before holding the Browns to 32 yards and two first downs the rest of the way.

On Sunday, Washington is in New England to face the Patriots at 1, Miami is in Buffalo to take on the Bills, the Jets will see Jacksonville in New York, and the Giants are on the road when they face the Buccaneers at 4.

The New York Giants have signed tight end Jerome Cunningham off the practice squad. To make room on the roster for Cunningham, the Giants placed rookie linebacker Owa Odighizuwa on injured reserve-designated for return. The Giants need an extra tight end because starter Larry Donnell has a neck injury. Will Tye is the only healthy tight end on the 53-man roster.

Nearly 60 years after their last NFL championship, the Detroit Lions are heading back to the drawing board once again. The Lions have fired president Tom Lewand and general manager Martin Mayhew in a move announced by owner Martha Firestone Ford. Lewand was in his 20th season with the Lions, and his sixth as president. Mayhew became the team's general manager when the team fired Matt Millen early in the 2008 season. Sheldon White will be the team's acting general manager, reporting directly to Ford. Detroit is an NFC-worst 1-7 this season and has a bye this week.

New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz has started running again and hopes to play this season. The 29-year-old Cruz ran on Thursday for the first time since aggravating a calf injury in late September. Cruz has not played in a game since he sustained a major knee injury in the sixth game of the 2014 season in Philadelphia.

The Pittsburgh Steelers signed veteran wide receiver and return specialist Jacoby Jones in hopes of giving their special teams a boost. The 31-year-old Jones was released by San Diego earlier this week after averaging 21.4 yards per kickoff return for the Chargers. The 2012 Pro Bowler has returned five kickoffs for touchdowns in his career.

Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Ricardo Lockette has posted on Twitter and Instagram that he has been released from a Dallas hospital following surgery to stabilize ligaments in his neck. Lockette was injured Sunday in Seattle's 13-12 win over Dallas on a hit from Cowboys safety Jeff Heath during a punt return. Lockette was knocked out and laid motionless on the field for several minutes before he was strapped to a backboard and taken off the field.

NBA:

In the NBA, Miami beat Minnesota 96-84, Chicago topped Oklahoma City 104-98, Charlotte won against Dallas 108-94, Utah defeated Denver 96-84, and it was Portland over Memphis 115-96.

The Mavericks have signed coach Rick Carlisle to a five-year contract extension that could keep him in Dallas until at least 2022. A person with knowledge of the deal says the Mavs' all-time leader in coaching victories is getting a five-year, $35 million extension that will kick in after the team option year in 2016-17. The 56-year-old Carlisle has gone 621-433 in a 14-year NBA coaching career with the Pistons, Pacers and Mavericks.

NHL:

In the NHL, Montreal topped the Islanders 4-1, Tampa Bay won against Buffalo 4-1, Washington bested Boston 4-1, Calgary edged Philadelphia in overtime 2-1, Ottawa skated by Winnipeg in a shootout 3-2, Nashville beat Minnesota 3-2, Arizona doubled up Colorado 4-2, Columbus edged Los Angeles 3-2, and it was San Jose over Florida 5-2.

Coming off back-to-back Olympic gold medals, Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Mike Babcock will lead Canada at next year's World Cup of Hockey. The Boston Bruins' Claude Julien, the Chicago Blackhawks' Joel Quenneville, the Washington Capitals' Barry Trotz and the Carolina Hurricanes' Bill Peters will all work under Babcock. Julien was with Babcock in Sochi when Canada went on an undefeated run to gold.

Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane has avoided criminal charges in a rape investigation, with prosecutors ending a bizarre three-month ordeal that put one of hockey's biggest stars at the center of intense speculation and criticism. Prosecutors have declined to file charges against Kane because of a lack of credible evidence in a case "rife with reasonable doubt." Erie County District Attorney Frank Sedita said a three-month investigation found that physical and forensic evidence "tend to contradict" the accuser's claim that she was raped on Aug. 2 at Kane's offseason home outside Buffalo.

MLB:

The Pawtucket Red Sox have named as its new president a Boston Red Sox executive with 40 years in Major League Baseball. Team chairman Larry Lucchino announced Charles Steinberg's appointment yesterday. Steinberg will continue as senior adviser to new Red Sox President Dave Dombrowski.

New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia says he had "no other option" than to leave the team for treatment for alcoholism ahead of its loss to Houston in the one-game AL wild-card playoff. In his first remarks to media since seeking treatment, Sabathia tells ABC that "it was just the time."

Mets pitcher Matt Harvey has won the NL Comeback Player of the Year award and Rangers designated hitter Prince Fielder has earned the AL honor. Returning from Tommy John surgery that caused him to miss the 2014 season, Harvey was 13-8 with a 2.71 ERA in 29 starts to help New York reach the World Series for the first time since 2000.

Fielder hit .305 with 23 homers and 98 RBIs for Texas, which won the AL West for the first time since 2011. He played in 42 games in 2014, when his season ended in mid-May because of a herniated neck disk that needed surgery.

New York Mets outfielder Curtis Granderson has had surgery on a ligament in his left thumb. Between the NL Championship Series and World Series, the team said Granderson was hurt while stealing a base in Game 3 against the Cubs.

In the first significant trade of the offseason, the Seattle Mariners have sent infielder Brad Miller, first baseman Logan Morrison and pitcher Danny Farquhar to the Tampa Bay Rays for pitchers Nathan Karns and C.J. Riefenhauser, and minor league outfielder Boog Powell.

Morrison played in a career-high 146 games last season, hitting .225 with 17 homers. Miller was moved between the middle infield and outfield, playing in 144 games. Karns likely jumps into Seattle's rotation after starting 26 games last season for the Rays, going 7-5 with a 3.67 ERA while leading American League rookies in innings pitched and strikeouts.

The World Series champion Kansas City Royals have exercised their $8 million option on All-Star closer Wade Davis and a $5.25 million option on All-Star shortstop Alcides (al-SEE'-dehs) Escobar, while declining a $3 million option on outfielder Jonny Gomes.

Davis took over as the closer when Greg Holland required Tommy John surgery late in the season. He wound up saving four games in the playoffs, and recorded the final out in the 12th inning of Game 5 against the New York Mets to wrap up the World Series.

Escobar, a Gold Glove finalist, was MVP of the AL Championship Series.

NCAA:

In top 25 college football, No. 2 Baylor won against Kansas State 31-24 and it was No. 24 Mississippi State over Missouri 31-13.

NASCAR:

Matt Kenseth's two-race suspension will stand. The driver lost appeals hearings in front of the National Motorsports Appeals Panel and the panel's final appeals officer. Kenseth will miss upcoming races at Texas and Phoenix before he's eligible to return for the Nov. 22 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Kenseth was punished for intentionally wrecking Joey Logano over the weekend during the race at Martinsville. NASCAR says it punished Kenseth harshly because his decision to wreck Logano altered the outcome of a race and that is never supposed to happen. Kenseth maintains he was exacting retribution after Logano wrecked him three races earlier, damaging his chances to advance in NASCAR's playoffs.

PGA:

Roberto Castro shot a 10-under 62 for a two-stroke lead through one round of the Sanderson Farms Championship in Jackson, Mississippi. Castro carded 10 birdies en route to his lowest score on the PGA Tour. Aaron Baddeley and Bryce Molder are tied for second, one shot ahead of Adam Hadwin and Brian Davis.

Bernhard Langer is the leader through 18 holes of the Charles Schwab Championship, the final event on the Champions Tour schedule. The 58-year-old German star began the week third in the Charles Schwab Cup race, 66 points behind Colin Montgomerie and 27 behind Jeff Maggert. Montgomerie opened with a 70, and Maggert carded a 72.

©2015 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.