ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Mike Nugent kicked a 43-yard field goal with 6:44 remaining in overtime to give the Cincinnati Bengals a 27-24 victory over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday afternoon at Ralph Wilson Stadium.
The win was the Bengals' first in three road games this season and improved their record to 4-2. The Bills dropped to 2-4.
After two straight games without a touchdown pass, Cincinnati quarterback Andy Dalton had scoring strikes of 18 yards to A.J. Green, 20 yards to Giovani Bernard and 10 yards to Marvin Jones. Dalton finished 26 of 40 for 337 yards and was picked off once by safety Jim Leonhard.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis rushed for 86 yards on 18 carries and Green had six receptions for 103 yards.
Thad Lewis, who was promoted from the Bills' practice squad to replace injured quarterback EJ Manuel, played well in his second NFL start. The third-year free agent from Duke completed 19 of 32 passes for 216 yards and two touchdowns. He also was sacked five times and lost a fumble.
Lewis tied the score at 24 when he connected with Marquise Goodwin on a 40-yard touchdown pass with 1:08 remaining. Cincinnati was unable to move the ball into field goal range in the final minute and the game went into overtime.
The Bengals won the overtime toss but wound up punting on their first possession. The Bills also failed to mount a drive and Brandon Tate's 29-yard punt return to the Buffalo 33 set up the winning field goal.
The Bengals took a 3-0 lead on a 46-yard field goal by Nugent 2:46 into the game. The score was set up by a 34-yard run on a reverse by Jones.
Buffalo answered with 3-yard touchdown run by Lewis less than three minutes later. A 47-yard completion -- the Bills' longest of the year -- from Lewis to T.J. Graham put Buffalo in scoring position at the Cincinnati 20.
The Bengals regained the lead on an 18-yard touchdown pass from Dalton to Green with 5:26 left in the first quarter. Jones had another big play on the drive, turning a short pass into a 42-yard gain to the Buffalo 28.
Buffalo then drove from its 23 to the Cincinnati 2, but the Bengals defense stopped three runs by Fred Jackson and a fourth-down attempt by Lewis to take over on downs.
After the goal-line stand, the Bengals drove 98 yards in nine plays and increased their lead to 17-7 on a 20-yard touchdown pass from Dalton to Giovani Bernard. The key play in the drive was a wide-receiver screen to Green that resulted in a 54-yard gain to the Bills 31.
Buffalo cut the lead to seven points on a 51-yard field goal by Dan Carpenter with 4:14 left in the half.
The Bengals took command of the game early in the second half after Carlos Dunlap stripped Lewis of the ball and linebacker Vontaze Burfict recovered at the Cincinnati 47. Nine plays later, Dalton threw his third touchdown pass, a 10-yard strike to Jones to put the Bengals up by 14.
Buffalo cut the gap to seven points with 10:13 left in the game on a 22-yard touchdown pass from Lewis to tight end Scott Chandler.
NOTES: Bills leading receiver Stevie Johnson (20 catches, 254 yards, 2 touchdowns) missed the game because of a back injury. Robert Woods started in his place. ... Nugent had a 24-yard field goal negated by a 10-yard holding penalty against Alex Smith late in the third quarter. Nugent wound up missing the ensuing attempt from 34 yards. ... The Bengals won for the first time in three games on the road and for the first time in its last seven visits to Ralph Wilson Stadium. ... Cincinnati's goal-line stand in the second quarter marked the first time in 16 tries this season that the Bills failed to come away with points in the red zone. ... Bills owner Ralph Wilson bought the final 5,000 tickets to ensure the game would not be blacked out.