Bengals tight end Jermaine Gresham is on pace to set career highs during his second NFL season this year. Through five games he's tied for the team lead with three receiving touchdowns and on pace for 67 receptions and 665 yards receiving. Yet no reception was bigger on Sunday than his fifth reception with 3:53 remaining in the game.
Cincinnati is down 20-16 to the Jacksonville Jaguars, forced into a fourth down conversion after an incomplete pass to A.J. Green in the end zone with just under four minutes remaining in the game. A field goal does nothing for the Bengals so head coach Marvin Lewis and offensive coordinator Jay Gruden elect to go for it on fourth and six from Jacksonville's 19-yard line.
Andy Dalton lines up in shotgun with Brian Leonard to his left. A.J. Green flanks wide right with Jermaine Gresham on Andre Smith's outside hip. Jerome Simpson lines up to Andrew Whitworth's left on the line with Andre Caldwell one step behind Simpson's outside hip.
Kyle Cook snaps the football and Caldwell runs a pivot out towards the sidelines while Simpson runs a 10-yard in-route. A.J. Green does what A.J. Green does best -- run towards the end zone. Jacksonville double-covered Simpson and Green with a nickel covering Caldwell (who had enough separation for a first down). Brian Leonard stayed in to block before delaying into a route over the middle.
Jermaine Gresham ran upfield with safety Dawan Landry covering Gresham's inside hip. After ten yards into his route, Gresham gave Landry a little nudge just as Andy Dalton cocked his arm for the throw. Gresham turned towards the quarterback after the pass traveled five yards, leaping into the air on a high throw and hauling down the first down pass.
Three plays later Bernard Scott would would take a third down handoff, scoring the game-winning touchdown just after the two minute warning. However if the Bengals fail to convert this fourth down reception, the Bengals don't score the touchdown later in the drive and perhaps lose the game.