LOS ANGELES: A remarkable one-handed catch from DeAndre Hopkins helped the Houston Texans score an upset 10-6 victory over the previously undefeated Cincinnati Bengals on Monday (Tuesday in Manila).
The Bengals, regarded by many as Super Bowl contenders after a blistering start to their National Football League campaign, fell to 8-1 after a misfiring performance from quarterback Andy Dalton.
Dalton was never able to get into his usual unerring rhythm in the face of a relentless Texas defensive display, which constantly had the Bengals playmaker under pressure.
The winning score came in the fourth quarter when T.J. Yates, who had replaced injured Texans quarterback Brian Hoyer, picked out Hopkins who leapt to gather with one hand before landing safely for the score.
Hopkins’ incredible take was the culmination of an expertly marshaled drive by stand-in Yates, who marched the Texans 79 yards up the field before his 22-yard floated pass to Hopkins which settled the match.
Hopkins catch was reminiscent of Odell Beckham Jr’s one-handed take for the New York Giants last season, with the Texans receiver somehow managing to get both feet down while toppling backwards.
The Bengals were left kicking themselves after an error-strewn performance.
But Dalton was unable to conjure anything from a last drive when he took over at the Bengals 19-yard line with 3:54 remaining in the fourth quarter.
On fourth and six, A.J. Green spilled the ball after appearing to catch, and the Texans recovered through safety Quintin Demps to hold on for the win.
The Bengals defeat leaves just two unbeaten teams in the NFL this season — the New England Patriots and the Carolina Panthers, who are both 9-0.