Jessie Bates must have been watching a lot of World Cup action over the past week.
The Bengals safety appeared to be injured against the Chiefs on Sunday as Kansas City was preparing for a second-and-goal in the second quarter. As the Chiefs were getting ready to run a play, Bates appeared to reach for his leg after perhaps suffering a cramp.He was able to walk to the sideline under his own power after first lying in the end zone.
But video review shows that the injury might not have been legit:
Incredibly timed injury here by Jessie Bates 😂pic.twitter.com/HFr987Axzq
— 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐒𝐩𝐨𝐫𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐍𝐞𝐰𝐬 (@sportingnews) December 4, 2022
MORE: Chiefs vs. Bengals live score, updates, highlights
Bates’ timing was certainly convenient. Cincinnati appeared to be in the process of bringing in substitutes when he fell to the turf. He had to sit out the second-down play but came back in for a third-down play.
The Chiefs proceeded to score a touchdown on that play as Patrick Mahomes connected with Jerick McKinnon from 2 yards out.
Back in 2013, the NFL sent a memo to teams discouraging players from faking injuries, noting that doing so could result in “fines of coaches, players, and clubs, suspensions or forfeiture of draft choices.”
MORE: How the Bengals slowed Patrick Mahomes in 2022 AFC championship game
Bates’ fake injury elicited plenty of responses on social media, including a lot of sarcastic well-wishes.
Jesse Bates has made a miraculous recovery to return to the field after just two plays.
— Sam McDowell (@SamMcDowell11) December 4, 2022
Prayers up for Jesse Bates. This looks brutal pic.twitter.com/PuXXglGWQz
— Ty (@SkyyHighTy) December 4, 2022
Good to see Jessie Bates back out there after that horrific injury in the end zone. #totsandpears
— Mick Shaffer (@mickshaffer) December 4, 2022
hey all of you who “can’t watch soccer” have to light bates up for that one.
— Joshua Brisco (@jbbrisco) December 4, 2022
Jessie Bates on the ground acting hurt pic.twitter.com/Upvr5k61hx
— Paulos (@yosephpaulos) December 4, 2022
They should start fining guys and teams when they see on film how obviously fake the injury is. Also I know Bates is the one wearing the headpiece so he hears the instructions but maybe you don’t want your top guy to be the one “hurt”
— Mitchell Schwartz (@MitchSchwartz71) December 4, 2022