How the Patriots and Bengals played out in real time Sunday:
12:58-Some guy named Danny Amendola is playing today for the Patriots. Never heard of him.
1:02-Leon Washington is active (relatively speaking) and he returns the opening kickoff to the 13 ... what a spark.
1:05-I hate using this played out word but Gene Steratore is the only referee in NFL history with any swagger ... or swag as the kids call it.
1:06-13-yard carry on Cincy’s first play by former Patriot BenJarvus Green-Ellis. Miss you Big Vince.
1:11-Two drives for the Pats, no first downs, two punts and two sacks allowed. Yuck.
1:15-If he stays healthy, double-digit sacks for Chandler Jones this season is basically a given.
1:28-22-yard catch by rookie Tyler Eifert, I guess that’s New England’s new weakness on defense: tight ends.
1:29-13-yard run by Green-Ellis, he looks motivated against his former team.
1:30-Haha brutal red zone interception by Dalton to Brandon Spikes. He forced it across his body to Eifert who was completely blanketed. Yikes, even Mark Sanchez thought that was a bad decision. 0-0 after one quarter, that was the first red zone INT of Dalton’s middling career. On the sidelines after it, he was seen shouting with offensive coordinator Jay Gruden.
1:33-7-yard catch by Amendola, he’s alive! Hope he’s not out for another month after that.
1:42-Dan Dierdorf calls Giovani Bernard “electric.” Curious timing after he was stuffed for no gain.
1:48-I understand why Gronk remains out, but he can’t come back soon enough since Hooman is terrible in the passing game.
1:49-Blount pays tribute to Ridley (out today) by fumbling in Bengals territory.
1:52-Just when Greg Gumbel and Dierdorf notice that A.J. Green hasn’t done anything, Dalton finds him for a pretty 18-yard catch.
1:55-9-yard sack by Chris Jones, who? (One of the nameless scrubs trying to replace Wilfork).
1:57-39-yard field goal by Mike Nugent so this won’t end 0-0.
1:59-No Blount on that kickoff, probably punishment for his fumble but Patriots fans will take it whatever the reason. \
2:03-18-yard catch by Julian Edelman before the two-minute warning, Patriots are finally moving the ball smoothly. A touchdown before the half would be enormous.
2:08-Great diving catch by Thompkins on 3rd down, good for 15 yards but it is being reviewed. It looked like clean to these homer eyes.
2:11-Or not, the better replay showed that he trapped it. Where’s the MLB umpires when you need them? Patriots have to punt it away.
2:14-Bengals are scared to death to let Dalton throw and who could blame them?
2:17-Welcome back Amendola. Perfect 21-yard grab down the seam.
2:19-Like Tampa Bay a few weeks ago, thanks for the free points. 42-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski ties it at three with eight seconds left in the half.
2:22-Just like we all predicted: 3-3 at halftime. Needless to say both defenses are controlling play and neither offense has done much of anything (1 turnover for each).
2:38-That sound you hear is a cash register ringing whenever Aqib Talib makes a play, like deflecting that pass away from Green.
2:39-24-yard punt return by Edelman, the Pats have woken up.
2:42-Nobody was open on the play but Brady can’t get sacked by a guy that’s lying on the ground.
2:49-I would pay good money to sit in a production meeting with Talib, comedic gold all over the place.
2:53-Mayo and Jones combine on a sack, what is this pass rush you speak of?
2:55-50-yard field goal by Mike Nugent gives Bengals an insurmountable 6-3 lead.
3:00-17-yard catch by Edelman who is having a really nice season so far.
3:03-Nice to see Bob Kraft’s girlfriend getting her homework done. Education is important.
3:07-Out of nowhere, since Dalton had been sacked at the 2, the Bengals hit some big plays: 28-yard catch by Marvin Jones and 28-yard run by Bernard puts Cincinnati in New England’s territory. Bengals lead 6-3 after three quarters.
3:13-Oh no, Tommy Kelly went down out of nowhere when he was chasing Dalton. That’s the last thing the Pats need.
3:19-Whew, Kelly is back in the game.
3:22-Haha classic Bengals mistake, they put a defensive tackle Domata Peko in since it was 3rd and goal from the 1 but he jumped early.
3:24-Green-Ellis runs it in from a yard out on fourth and goal. Right up the middle where Wilfork normally would be, Kelly also was out for that play. 13-3 might be enough unless the Pats score quickly on this next drive.
3:28-Belichick always taught us that stats are for losers so enough about Brady’s touchdown pass streak.
3:29-What a play! 53-yard catch and run by Dobson, who fumbled at the end but recovered it.
3:30-Amendola’s 16-yard catch gets it down to the goal-line.
3:31-2nd and Goal, Brady throws it to Nate Solder. Wait what? Shocking that didn’t work.
3:33-No Gronk=no red zone presence. Edelman dropped the 3rd down catch in the end zone so Patriots settle for a 19-yard field goal to cut it to a one-score game (13-6). There is still plenty of time for the Bengals to make another fatal miscue.
3:39-Sad face Tommy Kelly sitting on a stationary bike, now that is a depressing image.
3:40-Clutch 6-yard catch for Bernard on 3rd down, huge 1st down for Cincy.
3:41-And on the next play, Devin McCourty pops the ball out of Bernard’s hands and Mayo recovers at Cincy’s 44.
3:43-Crazy back and forth action, all-out blitz by the Bengals results in a sack of Brady and punt. Cincinnati gets it back at their own 8 but Pats have all three timeouts left and the two-minute warning.
3:48-On 3rd and 2, the Bengals do exactly what you’d expect: no gain by Green-Ellis up the middle. Two-minute warning and Pats will get the ball back with great field position, again.
3:49-It is absolutely pouring in Cincinnati.
3:52-Offsides by the Bengals, you couldn’t script all the mistakes they make year after year, week after week.
3:54-12-yard run by Brandon Bolden, this is like a wet t-shirt contest in terms of rain.
3:57-Bengals give the Pats another gift with a late/high hit on Brady but he throws it away and PacMan Jones picks it off. Game over, Bengals win 13-6.
Talk about a frustrating loss. You can’t say either team really deserved to win it but I guess Cincinnati did just a little bit more. New England (4-1) returns home next Sunday (4:25 p.m., FOX) to play unbeaten New Orleans (5-0) who looks like one of the top teams not only in the NFC but in the NFL. That’ll be a huge test. Lately it has sounded like Gronk was targeting that game to return, but who knows?
Follow Metro Boston sports writer Richard Slate on Twitter: @RichSlate