The Cincinnati Bengals are beating the Cleveland Browns, which in itself is not impressive – after all, the Browns entered Week 7 winless – but the manner in which they’ve taken a 21-10 halftime lead is special indeed. With the clock running down, the Bengals decided just to heave a hail mary, which honestly should happen a lot more often, and A.J. Green pulled it down spectacularly.
Catching a hail mary is one thing, but tipping it to yourself with one hand and reeling it in with the same damn hand is something we’re not sure we’ve ever seen before. He also did it with Browns defenders literally hanging all over him. The amount of concentration it takes to do something like this is astounding. We’ve seen hail maries before, and they’re never not crazy to behold when they’re pulled off, and if A.J. had made a tipping, one-handed catch anywhere else on the field, it would have been highlight material anyway. But the two factors combined make this the favorite for play of the year.
We’ve discussed the contest for the title of “Best receiver in football” before, and noted that Green is a half-tier below Julio Jones and Antonio Brown. Well, with that catch he may have just closed that gap — and the fact that he had over 100 yards receiving at halftime is another point in his favor.