The 1997Cincinnati Bengals season was the team's 30th year in professional football and its 28th with the National Football League. After winning the first game of the season, the Bengals go into a tailspin losing their next seven games, to effectively end their playoff hopes. The struggles would cost Jeff Blake his starting Quarterback job, as former Bengal starting QB Boomer Esiason who was reacquired in the off-season comes back in to lead the Bengals. With Esiason back under center the Bengals started to win as the old pro proved he had something left by connecting on 13 Touchdown passes, while only giving up two interceptions. Under Boomer the Bengals would win six of their final eight games, to finish with a 7–9 record. Just as the Bengals were ready to give Boomer Esiason the job full-time, he get a lucrative offer from ABC-TV to do games on Monday Night Football. Since he would earn more money on ABC he decided to retire. RB Corey Dillon set a rookie rushing record (since broken) for most yards in a game. On December 4, 1997, Dillon rushed for 246 yards in a game versus the Tennessee Oilers.