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Questionable call in Raiders-Giants game

Though there’s not much to ponder in a Raiders-Giants game that the New York team currently leads by a wide margin in the third quarter, there was a bad call in the first half that seems destined to land on Mike Pereira’s “Official Review” segment.

We received several e-mail messages about it, and in order to be clear on what happened we sought out input from Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News, who is at the game.

Oakland tailback Michael Bush Justin Fargas ran into the line and was stopped.  The ball popped out, safety C.C. Brown recovered it, and Brown returned it for a score.

The initial call on the field was that Bush was “down by contact.”  Though at one point during the second life of the replay rule not a reviewable decision, “down by contact” is now subject to video review, and possession may be awarded to the defensive team if the referee finds indisputable evidence both of a fumble before the runner was down and that a member of the defensive team recovered the ball.

So Giants coach Tom Coughlin threw the red flag.  The touchdown wouldn’t have counted in any event, but a successful challenge would have given the Giants the ball.

Then the officials explained that the call on the field wasn’t “down by contact,” but that the whistle had blown because the runner’s forward progress had been stopped.

The former is reviewable; the latter isn’t.

So the Giants got neither a touchdown nor the ball.

Still, they don’t need your pity.  The Giants currently lead the Raiders by 31 points, even with David Carr taking over for Eli Manning (heel) once the game was out of reach. 

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31 Responses to “Questionable call in Raiders-Giants game”
  1. TFBuckFutter says: Oct 11, 2009 3:10 PM

    The ball didn’t pop out, he was stripped.
    It was the right call though because his forward progress was stopped and he was wrapped by 4 or 5 defenders…..
    But no whistle had blown until after the ball was recovered. So even though the play was called correctly, the fact that it wasn’t officially stopped made it the wrong decision by the umps.
    I know this because I watched it. Yup, lucky me….I get to chose between Giants/Raiders and Bucs/Eagles. Thanks for the quality programming, NFL.

  2. charliewade says: Oct 11, 2009 3:13 PM

    What I want to know is why the NFL is still using traditional whistles at all. Check this out:
    http://www.ump-attire.com/Merchant2/merchant.mv?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=W1200&Category_Code=FA&Product_Count=0
    It’s an electronic whistle. The big advantage is that it saves the hearing of the official, which is actually a big concern. The whistle sound is emitted at the end of the arm, not inches from the ear.
    But this is 2009, they can’t design and sell an electronic whistle that also alerts the replay system as to exactly WHEN a whistle was ‘blown’ and which official did it?
    The NFL keeps trying to protect their incompetent officials and it always seems to show. When are they going to employ full time officials?

  3. cannoli says: Oct 11, 2009 3:14 PM

    The most questionable call in this game was continuing to let Russell onto the field.

  4. RevSkip says: Oct 11, 2009 3:16 PM

    The officials felt bad for the Raiders and threw them a bone.

  5. east96street says: Oct 11, 2009 3:19 PM

    “Still, they don’t need your pity.”
    That’s true. However, inept officiating CAN cost teams games. The call was awful. The replay showed clearly that the ball came out prior to the runner being down and the network ran the replay over with enhanced audio and the whistle was not blown UNTIL the ball was recovered by NY. If Pereira does anything but apologize and admit the call was blown, he’s a liar. The refs blew this call badly and should be held accountable. It meant nothing in this game, but allowing mistakes that bad to be ignored because a game is a blow out is wrong.

  6. 2brauneyz says: Oct 11, 2009 3:19 PM

    Except I never heard a whistle till well after Jints recovered, who got hosed. Forward progress, my arse.
    Seems like every game this season we are seeing evidence of blatantly awful reffing. Pereira ought to be glad he’s retiring. This is a joke!
    Go Pats! (Yes, that game was full of poor calls, too.)

  7. Snowman2008 says: Oct 11, 2009 3:20 PM

    All calls should be subject to review. Isn’t that the reason for instant replay. To get calls right? A bonehead call like that in a close game would decide it.

  8. bearsrule says: Oct 11, 2009 3:28 PM

    I know this because I watched it. Yup, lucky me….I get to chose between Giants/Raiders and Bucs/Eagles. Thanks for the quality programming, NFL.
    Here in central Illinois we are getting Lions/Steelers on CBS and Vikings/Rams on FOX. This is freakin’ brutal.

  9. dEV says: Oct 11, 2009 3:30 PM

    I want to know why the officials can call something “down by contact,” then after a challenge flag is thrown, have a pow-wow, talk about it, and then decide it was “down by contact.”
    Regardless, the replay clearly showed that the runner was still moving forward when the ball came out, and the whistle didn’t blow until Brown was ten yards down the field.
    If you can challenge the spot of the ball, isn’t that challenging “forward progress”? And if you can challenge the spot, the fumble, and even if the runner is down by contact, why can’t you challenge in a situation like this? It’s just silly.

  10. rangersleadtheway says: Oct 11, 2009 3:36 PM

    Florio… nice reporting…too bad it was JUSTIN FARGAS that fumbled, not Michael Bush.

  11. jedicurt says: Oct 11, 2009 3:43 PM

    Not only was it Fargas and not Bush, but it wasn’t C.C. Brown that recovered it…

  12. stanjam says: Oct 11, 2009 3:48 PM

    If the call was actually forward progress, then the whistle should have been blown while the players were still standing, not after the ball comes out. The refs changed the call after the fact. Bad.

  13. RaiderChile says: Oct 11, 2009 4:09 PM

    So what! Gmen KILLED the Raiders and now complaining about a call. Pathetic.

  14. IWanttoPunchFloriointheFace says: Oct 11, 2009 4:22 PM

    The game was out of reach when it was 7-0…

  15. rangersleadtheway says: Oct 11, 2009 4:26 PM

    i want to thank CBS for the in-game switch to the LIONS game.

  16. Fanamine says: Oct 11, 2009 5:07 PM

    “I know this because I watched it. Yup, lucky me….I get to chose between Giants/Raiders and Bucs/Eagles. Thanks for the quality programming, NFL.”
    Did you know it may be possible to purchase all NFL games for a price? If that is true, then you can stop crying and watch any game you choose. If that is not true, then griping is not going to change anything. Unless, you believe the NFL owes you something different then the rest of us. The schedule is made long before the games are played.

  17. Fanamine says: Oct 11, 2009 5:20 PM

    “So what! Gmen KILLED the Raiders and now complaining about a call. Pathetic”
    Pathetic is someone who believes that the score should influence what is right or wrong. The call was a bad one and clearly shows a growing problem in the quality of officiating. The complaint is legitimate regardless of the score. Bad calls do affect game outcomes. In this case it did not. That does not make it any less wrong.

  18. giantphan says: Oct 11, 2009 5:23 PM

    ok this game was “over” when this play happened ….. but what about in the dullass – k.c. game when the same thing happened …. i’m not sure which reciever it was but it was the same situation ….. dullass got stripped ….. k.c picked it up and just like dEV said in his post there was a pow-wow and then their ruling ….. and that was a close game.
    now i’m not one of those people who think one call like that will change everything ….. we all have friends like that (yes even I have friends, not many but a few lol) you know the type, it goes something like this ….. oh damn …. the refs blew it ….. if they called it right than it was a fumble, and the chiefs recover it ….. the next play cassell throws a touchdown pass which builds up his confidence, the defense still jacked up from recovering the fumble completly shuts down dallas, cassell comes back in and throws a 97 yard td pass ….. the rest of the game he does nothing but throw td’s causing k.c to win 157 – 3 now the chiefs can’t be stopped and they finish the season 12 – 4 and go on to win the superbowl, president obama is so impressed with k.c he invites them to the white house where he anoints them sports czar’s and cancels next years nfl season and gives them next years superbowl trophy as well. the nobel peace prize commitee gives them the prize. in the meantime the ref who blew the call quit football sold his whistle and bought a bottle of thunderbird wine, his wife and kids left him and he now lives under a freeway overpass, where he hopes for rain so he can shower and go on the dr. phil show, but noooooooo instead dallas keeps the ball and kc eventually loses
    damn refs suck
    ok ok i really need to switch to decaff lol
    phred

  19. TFBuckFutter says: Oct 11, 2009 6:30 PM

    “Fanamine says:
    October 11, 2009 5:07 PM
    Did you know it may be possible to purchase all NFL games for a price? If that is true, then you can stop crying and watch any game you choose. If that is not true, then griping is not going to change anything. Unless, you believe the NFL owes you something different then the rest of us. The schedule is made long before the games are played.”
    Yeah. I was “crying”. I wasn’t even watching either game, I was watching Game 3 of the ALDS and occasionally flipping back. When the schedule is crappy, I follow the games online…..
    I was just making light of the fact that, of all the games to be aired opposite my incredible crappy local team, they decided to choose one featuring an equally crappy team. I got the Pats/Broncs game now though.

  20. masterblaster78 says: Oct 11, 2009 7:04 PM

    The questionable call is why wasn’t Russell pulled in the game? What a total embarassment to the team and to the NFL. Another bad part of all this is the Giants never let up. They kept rubbing it in trying to score.

  21. TFBuckFutter says: Oct 11, 2009 7:40 PM

    masterblaster78, Why wasn’t Russell pulled? Are you kidding?
    This was his best game of the season. By far. 62% completion rate and 0 INTS.

  22. Bob S. says: Oct 11, 2009 7:40 PM

    And then the same BS CROOKED call in the Pats/Broncos game. The playerts are honest.
    The bookmaker owners like Mara, Rooney, Bidwell etc. own the refs! This sport has more betting on it and these owners know it!

  23. Bob S. says: Oct 11, 2009 7:46 PM

    forget down by contact since you can replay it, so the crooks will just call it momentum was stopped and blow the whistle but sometimes dont blow the whistle then lie about it. or like in giants game first say over loudspeaker with the refs own mouth and lips ” he was ruled down by contact” then after thinking about it that they could review that- then say “his momentum was stopped so you suckers cant review it”.

  24. Bob S. says: Oct 11, 2009 7:51 PM

    whatta coincidence that on one single sunday the momemtum has stopped rule becomes used by the crooks paid by the former bokmakers – owners of teams of the nfl
    kc-dal
    nyg-oak
    ne-den
    maybe they bet the giants game under 52?

  25. Bigbluefan says: Oct 11, 2009 8:11 PM

    masterblaster78 says:
    October 11, 2009 7:04 PM
    The questionable call is why wasn’t Russell pulled in the game? What a total embarassment to the team and to the NFL. Another bad part of all this is the Giants never let up. They kept rubbing it in trying to score.
    Rubbing it in they pulled Eli had the water boy as running back
    The issue is when you put in the second and third string they want the endzone as much if not more then the first team
    This is the NFL not T Ball you get paid to play
    If they Giants wanted to they could have put up 75 points and really put a hurt on the Raiders
    Carrr was trying to put a highlight reel together for next season as were the rest of the taxi squad that we had playing

  26. giantphan says: Oct 11, 2009 8:37 PM

    bigblue i’m with you 100% ….. what could the giants do short of lending the raiders eli?
    i’m 48 years old and have been a die hard giant phan since i learned how to yell go giants 45 years ago, i read everything i possibly can about them and they were playing guys i never heard of ….. so to say they were rubbing it in is a lil over the top
    heres an idea how about the raiders try something new like tackling, pass defending, or keeping the ball for more than three and out.
    masterblaster your right, they should have pulled russell …… 2 games ago
    bigblue congrats on a pretty good season so far ….. next week will be a good game
    phred

  27. Bigbluefan says: Oct 11, 2009 9:24 PM

    RaiderChile says:
    October 11, 2009 4:09 PM
    So what! Gmen KILLED the Raiders and now complaining about a call. Pathetic.
    Did the raiders show up on a short bus are there two sets of rules one for good teams and one for teams that could not win a UFL game????
    A bad call is a bad call the Refs should not have any impact on the outcome of a game we could have had our second shut out the D works hard and they should not have plays stolen by shitty refs

  28. Skol Vikes says: Oct 11, 2009 9:24 PM

    OK serious question here…
    How is this any different than AP’s fumble against the packers. He was wrapped up by at least 4 packers players who were holding him up so he couldnt go down, and his forward progress was obviously stopped (they were basically carrying him backwards)
    So how is that play not blown dead because his progress is stopped. I said at the time that the play should have been blown dead because his forward progress was very obviously stopped.
    Now 1 week later the same thing happens but this time the refs say that the play was over and give the ball back the the offense.
    WFT?
    Please tell me if im missing something but the plays seem very similar with the refs making very different calls.

  29. Black Sunday says: Oct 11, 2009 9:43 PM

    same thing happened in the Bronco’s game today. It was a fumble that was not reviewable because of forward progress. Florio is just building a case to those fans that think the Raiders never get calls.

  30. DirtMcGirt24 says: Oct 11, 2009 10:56 PM

    Doesn’t forward progress technically end at the very instant that every fumble in history has occured? If a safety comes in and puts his helmet on the ball and pops it loose, the ball carrier didn’t progress the ball any further than the point of the loss of possession, so, technically, every single fumble could thus be ruled “forward progress stopped”.
    However, the real bad call was the one that set that fumble call up a few plays earlier, in which Russell, with all the accuracy in the world, threw about 10 yards behind his man on a crossing route and they called pass interference, extending the drive.
    The officiating in the league is bad, The refs need to take the rule book out and actually read it good.

  31. eklypse69 says: Oct 12, 2009 5:09 PM

    TFBuckFutter says:
    October 11, 2009 3:10 PM
    “…The ball didn’t pop out, he was stripped.
    …I know this because I watched it. Yup, lucky me….I get to chose between Giants/Raiders and Bucs/Eagles. Thanks for the quality programming, NFL.”
    Who’s worse, you or me? I pay for NFL Sunday Ticket to watch the Raiders on purpose, and torture myself every week as a fan of a team that can’t play their way out of a wet paper bag!!
    And, I do agree with many of you, that the call was crap. I normally would launch a tirade of all the botched calls we’ve been the butt of this year, and that this is merely payback, but that’s crap, and it’s a cop out. The call was bogus, and the refs screwed up AGAIN. Not that it made a difference to NY, but it’s still crap, and Perriera needs to be kicked in the baggie for trying to defend these B.S. screw ups by his boys every week and start bringing the hammer down on them.

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