It was a must-score drive deep in the fourth quarter at Baltimore, and Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford was changing the play at the line of scrimmage.
Attached to the right side of the line, rookie tight end Davis Allen heard the adjustment, roared down the seam at the snap, and contorted his leaping 6'6" frame to reel in a majestic 21-yard catch. It was his most impressive play of a waterlogged afternoon in which the 22-year-old from Clemson also registered his first NFL touchdown. He and Stafford looked as if they had been rehearsing that audible all week, if not all season.
In truth, how often had they practiced that play together?
"That would be the first," Allen said this week on Rams Revealed.
Spending most of his debut season on special teams to that point, Allen was thrust into that offensive moment due to Tyler Higbee missing Week 14, combined with an in-game injury to fellow tight end Hunter Long.
While Allen didn't flinch under the bright lights of Baltimore, he did appreciate the confidence his quarterback placed in him with that precision strike.
"It meant a lot. I grew up a Matthew Stafford fan, coming from the state of Georgia," the Calhoun native said. "My dad played at Georgia, and so I kind of have a Georgia family… Being able to have the opportunity to play with (Stafford) has been a huge blessing, and for him to be able to trust me in that situation is even better."
Allen's father, John, was a middle linebacker for the Bulldogs; Allen's brother played defensive end at Air Force. And in keeping with family tradition, the current Rams tight end grew up on the defensive side of the ball, as well.
In fact, while Allen may have rooted for Stafford in his youth, he was even more captivated by another college football legend – Brian Bosworth.
"I grew up watching The Boz," he said, admitting that he seldom paid attention to the tight end position until Clemson offered him a scholarship and with the projection he could thrive in that role.
For more on Allen's path to the pros, a review of the win over Washington, and a look ahead to Thursday Night Football, click through to this episode of Rams Revealed. And please join us at SoFi Stadium for the home finale against the New Orleans Saints.