It figures that, after we spilled plenty of e-ink in defending the Week One decision to take away from the Oakland Raiders a second-quarter touchdown after receiver Louis Murphy, despite having possession and two feet down, lost the ball when hitting the ground, officials blew two similar calls in the next Sunday of action.
In both cases, the calls on the field were upheld via replay review, even though it appears to us that the touchdowns should have been wiped off the board, just like Murphy’s was.
First, Texans receiver Jacoby Jones made an end-zone catch against the Titans that, based on our understanding of the rule that took away the Murphy touchdown, shouldn’t have been a catch. (For the video, click here and forward to 1:55.)
The quickly developing play, which sort of reminds us of Butch Johnson’s arguable non-catch in Super Bowl XII, involved Jones making the catch, going to the ground, and losing possession once hitting the ground.
Second, Panthers tight end Dante Rosario made a catch against the Falcons while going to the ground. He reached the ball over the goal line while falling, and then he lost possession just as he hit the turf.
The referee ignored the plain terms of the rule that took away Murphy’s score, ruling instead that Rosario made the catch and then in a separate action reached the ball over the goal line.
But Rosario was going to the ground while he was catching the ball. So, under Rule 8, Section 1, Article 3, Item 1, Rosario was required to maintain possession after hitting the ground. And, as abundantly clear in the video, he didn’t.
So, yes, while Raiders fans were wrong to be upset last Monday night, they should be livid now.