Jerome Simpson's touchdown flip keeps Bengals alive

Wide receiver Jerome Simpson (89) of the Cincinnati Bengals goes to the line of scrimmage against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on September 18, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

It's been an up-and-down year for the Cincinnati Bengals. But there's been a whole lot more up than the perennially awful "Bungles" are used to.

They've put together a winning season -- just their third in 21 years -- led by the phenomenal rookie duo of quarterback Andy Dalton and receiver A.J. Green, both legitimate contenders for the rookie of the year prize that will wind up going to Carolina's Cam Newton.

Oh yeah, and with a win next week over the Baltimore Ravens, they're headed to the playoffs. So you can't blame receiver Jerome Simpson for feeling like he had something to flip for.

Jerome Simpson flips over Daryl Washington
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Jerome Simpson (89) flips over Arizona Cardinals linebacker Daryl Washington (58) for a touchdown Dec. 24, 2011, in Cincinnati.
AP Photo/Darron Cummings

In a 23-16 home win over Arizona Saturday, Simpson took a late second quarter toss from Dalton outside the Arizona 20, zoomed down the sideline and -- launching himself from the 4 -- flipped head-first over Cardinals linebacker Daryl Washington, easily clearing Washington's head and sticking the landing.

The bad news for the Bengals? Running back Cederic Benson had to sit out part of the season after being suspended by the league for two misdemeanor assault charges (he spent time in jail in the offseason). Simpson himself ran afoul of the law when a 2.5 lb package of marijuana was tracked to his house.

Meanwhile, despite the winning season, the AP reports that Cincinnati's Paul Brown Stadium is drawing record-low attendance.

But this is a team on the rise. Already loaded with young talent like Dalton, Green, and second-year tight end Jermaine Gresham, the team got a highway-robbery deal for disgruntled quarterback Carson Palmer, dealing him midseason to the desperate Raiders for a first round pick in 2012 and a second-rounder in 2013.

  • Ken Millstone

    Ken Millstone is an assignment editor at CBSNews.com

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