Benson was steady in rainy conditions in Charlotte, ending with 81 yards rushing on 27 carries. His 7-yard receiving score with eight minutes remaining in the game effectively sealed the Bengals' win.
Cincinnati (2-1) pounced on four Carolina turnovers and used the miscues to dominate time-of-possession. The Bengals held the ball for 35:42 of the game's 60 minutes.
Carson Palmer didn't have a great day for Cincinnati but got the job done, going 19-of-37 for 195 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. Four of the completions went to Jermaine Gresham for 59 yards.
Jimmy Clausen, making his first career start, struggled to complete just 16-of-33 passes for 188 yards for the Panthers (0-3).