Jordan Shipley's performance against the Atlanta Falcons may have been a break-out game for the rookie wide receiver, provided that the Bengals coaching staff hasn't forgotten about him or Carson Palmer's locking mechanism on Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco hasn't been fixed. But it also may have single-handedly given Shipley a nomination for October's NFL Rookie of the Month award.
With 1:49 left in the third quarter and 12 yards to go on third down on Cincinnati's own 36-yard line, Carson Palmer and Shipley looked at each other, finding a message on a radio wavelength only the two could understand. Like force powers, brother. Palmer received the shotgun snap, the Falcons blitzed. With a safety covering Shipley nearly 10 yards off, well off the television screen, the rookie receiver turned, caught the quick pass from Palmer, run upfield and finally redirecting down the left sideline. The 64-yard touchdown was Shipley's first NFL touchdown in his career and it brought the Bengals deficit to within five points during Cincinnati's 22-point third quarter, eventually taking the lead after losing 24-3 at halftime.
Shipley finished with 131 yards receiving on six receptions and was nominated for the Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Week (that went to Dez Bryant). But primarily based on that game, Shipley was also nominated for the NFL Rookie for the month of October.
The Rams' Sam Bradford would win the month award after winning three games in October, completing 102 of 175 passes for 1,019 yards passing, seven touchdowns and three interceptions.