Calling the regular season finale between the Bengals and the Ravens a "shootout" wouldn't be wholly accurate. Sure, Ryan Mallett threw the ball 56 times, but neither team was really going bombs away on each other, as evidenced by the 24-16 score. Regardless of the game plan, the Bengals came out on top for their franchise-tying 12th win of 2015.
In the win, both offense and defense made some big plays, and now it's your time to vote on your selection for the play of the week. Cast it and sound off in the comments!
Marvin Jones' 23-Yard Reception:
The Bengals put themselves in a hole on a drive in the second quarter, thanks to a frustrating stretch of penalties. Facing a 2nd-and-30, AJ McCarron scrambled through pressure and found Jones for what would become the biggest gain through the air on the afternoon. More penalties stalled the drive and Cincinnati had to punt.
Tyler Eifert's Second Quarter Touchdown Reception:
For not playing with each other on the field all season, McCarron and Eifert had some nice chemistry going. It came to a head with just under two minutes to play when McCarron found the red zone demon for a 22-yard touchdown strike, temporarily giving the Bengals the lead.
Vontaze Burfict's Interception in Third Quarter:
The Ravens were felling pretty good about things, as they grabbed a field goal right before the half to re-take the lead, 9-7. Making matters worse for Cincinnati was Baltimore's receiving of the ball to start the second half. Luckily, the very active Burfict read a route in the flat and made a great diving interception.
A.J. Green's Fancy Footwork, Part One:
Cincinnati was in business thanks to the Burfict pick and McCarron began to look at the team's other great red zone threat. On a second down while closing in on the end zone, he found Green working against Shareece Wright for a completion. During the play, Green showed masterful footwork and came down with a 12-yard reception.
A.J. Green's Fancy Footwork, Part Two:
No, we're not repeating the previous play, though it seemed to be a very similar play call. One play after he worked some sideline magic, Green dragged his toes after hauling in a five-yard touchdown catch over Wright again. The play gave the Bengals a 14-9 lead, and they would never trail again.
Jeremy Hill's 38-Yard Touchdown Run:
Cincinnati's offense was moving again, but hit a frustrating stop in the middle of a promising drive in the third quarter. After an inexplicable call to go deep on a 3rd-and-1, the team decided to go for it on fourth down from the Baltimore 38-yard line. After struggling to crack a big play all season, Hill picked a great time to have his longest run of 2015, as he took the carry all the way to the house.
Rey Maualuga's Game-Ending Interception:
Baltimore made it interesting late in the game, particularly when they were down by eight points and had the ball with under a minute to play. On second down, Mallett dropped back and made the dreaded mistake of throwing off his back foot. The ball fluttered and landed into the waiting arms of Maualuga to end the game.