The NFL: Where Amazing Happens.
What? That’s an old NBA slogan? Ah, whatever.
Amazing happened multiple times during Week 16 of the NFL season, and no two plays were more amazing than the highlight-reel catches made by Julio Jones and Jarvis Landry.
Let’s breakdown Jones’s catch first.
Trailing the undefeated Panthers 13-7 with 2:12 remaining in the third quarter, the Falcons faced a third-and-13 from their own 30-yard line. Matt Ryan dropped back to pass and got flushed out of the pocket, scrambling to his left. Seeing Jones streaking downfield, Ryan heaved the ball 50 yards in his direction. Jones did the rest.
Jones catches some serious air and plucks the ball above Luke Kuechly’s outstretched arm. He then manages to stay on his feet and waltz into the end zone for a 70-yard touchdown. Kuechly is a phenomenal player, and he does a great job of defending the pass (you can even see his hand on Julio’s arm as he tries to rip his fingers off the ball), but sometimes there’s just no answer for Jones’s otherworldly athleticism.
Jarvis Landry’s play was also an impressive showcase of athleticism.
With 6:56 remaining in the fourth quarter and the Dolphins trailing the Colts 18-9, Ryan Tannehill dropped back and tossed the ball in Landry’s direction. What happened next was incredibly reminiscent of Odell Beckham Jr.’s ridiculous one-handed grab from last season.
Landry’s body was almost parallel to the ground when he snagged the pigskin. He showcased amazing focus, coordination and grip strength by reeling it in.
So, whose play was better?
We have to give the nod to Jones. The fact that he made the play on top of a three-time Pro Bowler like Kuechly increases the degree of difficulty, which gives him bonus points. The play also resulted in a crucial touchdown that helped the Falcons hand the Panthers their first loss of the season, a factor which cannot be overlooked.
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