NFL Play of the Year 2011: No Play Challenges the Acrobatics of Jerome Simpson

Luis Batlle@lbatll1Contributor IFebruary 4, 2012

CINCINNATI, OH - DECEMBER 24: Jerome Simpson #89 of the Cincinnati Bengals jumps over Daryl Washington #58 of the Arizona Cardinals for a 19-yard touchdown during first half action at Paul Brown Stadium on December 24, 2011 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The NFL Play of the Year took 16 weeks to get to, as the top spot this year has to belong to Jerome Simpson when it's all said and done.

The Cincinnati Bengals WR took what looked like a short catch and first down, all the way to the 5-yard line.

There Simpson would leave his feet and do what nobody could have even fathomed he would do.

After leaving his feet on what looked like a simple hurdle over Cardinals LB Daryl Washington, the hurdle soon turned into a tremendous vertical leap. From a leap came a front flip and the rest was history.

The front flip was not only done at his highest point, but what made it all the more impressive was that he stuck the landing perfectly and was able to just keep his left hand inches away from the sideline.

Talk about impressive.

Sure, the catch wasn't anything special nor was the chunk of yardage after the catch. What made this play so special was the risk factor and the perfection of the acrobatic leap.

If Simpson fails to come down with a perfect landing, more likely than not he is hitting the sidelines with an injury. A postseason contending team like the Bengals would have taken a tremendous blow had Simpson come down holding a knee or shoulder.

Yet the risk can be put to rest, as he is perfectly fine and is now having his gymnastics display played over and over again by ESPN and fans of the game.

The front-flip touchdown now goes down as not only the Play of the Year, but one of the more impressive touchdown plays to ever grace the game. Make no mistake about it, this touchdown was the real deal.

When it's all said and done, Jerome Simpson walks away with a lock for the 2011 NFL's Play of the Year. He also walks away with one of the better touchdowns in NFL history. To have another play come up on top for this year's top play would be an outright injustice.