Bengals Play Of The Game: Brandon Tate's 56-Yard Punt Return For Touchdown

Carlos Dunlap had just posted his first quarterback sack of the season, pushing the Seattle Seahawks offense to their own seven-yard line. With over three minutes remaining in the game and Cincinnati barely holding onto a five-point lead that was once doubled early in the first quarter, Seattle punter Jon Ryan jogs onto the field with the rest of the punt team. At this point the general hope was that Cincinnati could end the game, milking the clock with runs that kept Bernard Scott in-bounds. Ryan's right foot rested a yard short from the back of the endzone as the long snapper unleashes a perfect spiral to the punter.

Brandon Tate settles under the football on Cincinnati's 44-yard line. After making a basket catch, Tate immediately veers to his left after Leon Hall clears the gunner, opening the sidelines with Jeromy Miles and Vincent Rey blocking inside, combined with a monstrous block by Cedric Peerman. Linebacker David Vobora had a shot to bring Tate down, but slithered off as if Tate were coated in butter. Tate high-stepped it into the endzone giving the Bengals a 27-12 lead with 3:22 remaining in the game.

It was Cincinnati's first punt return for touchdown since Peter Warrick in 2003 against the Kansas City Chiefs, over 124 regular season games ago. Not only that, it sealed Cincinnati's win over the Seahawks (doubly-so with Reggie Nelson's pick-six several minutes later). Before Tate's 56-yard touchdown return, there was still a sense of concern, primarily because the offense stalled into such a funk that one lucky play or pass interference against Cincinnati's defense could put the Seahawks into a position to tie the game. Tate eliminated that possibility in one play.

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