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Bengals’ William Jackson: I knew Le’Veon Bell was out of bounds, but he wasn’t

Le'Veon Bell, Jordan Evans, William Jackson

Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell (26) runs past Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Jordan Evans (50) and cornerback William Jackson, left, for a touchdown in the second half of an NFL football game, Monday, Dec. 4, 2017, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)

AP

Bengals cornerback William Jackson committed one of the strangest plays of this NFL season on Monday night when he stood and watched as Le’Veon Bell raced down the sideline for a touchdown. Jackson easily could have pushed Bell out of bounds, but he didn’t.

After the game, Jackson said he was sure Bell had stepped out of bounds, and he avoided touching Bell because he was afraid of picking up a penalty. Unfortunately for Jackson, replays showed that Bell had tiptoed along the sideline and remained inbounds.

“I thought he was out, and I didn’t want to late-hit him. He’s a veteran guy. He turned it up, caught me slipping and scored a touchdown,” Jackson said. “I was definitely surprised. I just knew he was out of bounds, but obviously, he wasn’t. It is what it is.”

It was an incredibly costly play in a game the Bengals appeared to have in hand early on, but ended up losing. Jackson made a huge mistake.