Titans' Hall: Hochuli apologized for call that cost Johnson record

After the final game of the 2009 season, several members of the Tennessee Titans ripped a holding call on fullback Ahmard Hall that negated a 62-yard run by Chris Johnson and may have cost Johnson the single-season rushing record.

Now Hall says Ed Hochuli, the referee who threw the flag on the play, has apologized.

Hall told Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean that Hochuli apologized both to him and to Johnson and admitted the holding call was “a mistake.”

It is big of him,” Hall said. “Some guys won’t admit they’re wrong regardless if they’re dead wrong. So that is a big deal, with the record that could’ve been and him being a prestigious referee, to admit that he was wrong.”

Johnson finished the 2009 season with 2,006 rushing yards, exactly 100 short of breaking Eric Dickerson’s NFL record. Titans coach Jeff Fisher said that if Johnson hadn’t been deprived of those 62 yards on the run that Hochuli’s flag called back, the Titans would have given the ball to Johnson enough late in the game to get him the record.

Hall says he felt terrible about his penalty, but now feels better because Hochuli has told him it wasn’t really holding.

“I got over it, but I admit it hurt me for a while,” Hall said. “You are getting replayed on ESPN as the guy who had the phantom holding call. But for Ed to apologize personally, that definitely added closure to the situation.”

Hochuli hasn’t discussed the play publicly, but Hall says Hochuli told him that the NFL marked him down for the mistake.

“He told us that call made him miss out on a big playoff game,” Hall said. “He got a low, low grade for that call. He regretted it and talked to myself and C.J., and then talked to the team. He admitted it was a bad call. People make mistakes, and it was big for him to own up to it.”

21 responses to “Titans' Hall: Hochuli apologized for call that cost Johnson record

  1. How does that scumbag shyster lawyer Hochuli even keep his job? Stole a game from the Chargers as he made “people in the know” who bet large on the Broncos that day a whole lot wealthier. Screws up bigtime on a record that Johnson most likely won’t ever get close to again. That lawyer should have been fired years ago.

  2. Bologna!, or Baloney!, whatever it takes. No way Ed apologized, no way he apologized to a scrub player, and no way can we ass/u/me Johnson would have gained another 39 yards in the game. Worst Story Ever. Let’s do some investigating into the Super Bowl III fix for chrissakes.

  3. guess What..it is too late now. the season is over and next done with..2010 is here. Tell the ref..it is a whole new season. it’s a shame that referee’s still can dictate the outcome of a game with the technology available. Referee should stick to their orginals calls and take it like a man.

  4. A reason that stats and records in the NFL don’t mean everything.
    This is not baseball, a sport where the individual has more impact, and I’ve never seen a yellow flag negate a GW HR.

  5. which is the most unlikely to happen: Chris Johnson rushing for 2,500 yards or the Jets winning the Super Bowl?

  6. At leat Hochuli owned up to his mistake and went to the people involved to let them know he blew it.
    I only wish we had politicians that would be that straight up with the American people instead of their patronistic attitude of “we know what is best for you.”

  7. What the hell, now are all refs going to have to say “Holding #79 offense, I am sorry to do this, you really don’t deserve it and it is probably a bad call, five yard penalty, that the defense doesn’t really deserve, repeat 2nd down.”
    Jesus, someone give hochulie his steroids back so he will stop being a wus.
    There are at least 5-10 penalties that can be called each game that are not. Quit apologizing for getting calls wrong. I love how Fischer says they would have given him the ball more to get the record, what BS. I hate that “If” crap that people say in football, well “If” I was 6-5 and 230 lbs and ran a 4.35 40, I could be a hell of a wide receiver, so I deserve $5,000,000 per year right??

  8. What the hell, now are all refs going to have to say “Holding #79 offense, I am sorry to do this, you really don’t deserve it and it is probably a bad call, five yard penalty, that the defense doesn’t really deserve, repeat 2nd down.”
    Jesus, someone give hochulie his steroids back so he will stop being a wus.
    There are at least 5-10 penalties that can be called each game that are not. Quit apologizing for getting calls wrong. I love how Fischer says they would have given him the ball more to get the record, what BS. I hate that “If” crap that people say in football, well “If” I was 6-5 and 230 lbs and ran a 4.35 40, I could be a hell of a wide receiver, so I deserve $5,000,000 per year right??
    By t he way, a lot of the referees in the NFL are lawyers….

  9. If Hochuli spent as much time perfecting his craft instead of showing off his guns, he may just be worth a damn

  10. Sure, if a ref makes the ODD mistake and then owns up to it, good for him, I’m fine with that.
    A ref that sucks ass and “owns up to it”, is owning up to sucking ass.
    Hochuli sucks ass.

  11. At least Hochuli has the honesty to own up to his mistakes. Are you listening, Pete Marelli? We’re still waiting for an explanation/apology for the hatchet job you did in refereeing last year’s NFC title game.

  12. Might be a good thing, in retrospect, that Hochuli blew that call. We can barely afford Chris Johnson’s massive ego now, as it stands. Any more self-inflation and he’d asplode like the marshmallow man in Ghostbusters.

  13. That’s nice, now can the entire NFL apologize to the Ravens and the Steelers’ opponents for rigging their games?

  14. I’m not sure what to make of all this “cozy talk” crap that is permeating the American culture lately. I mean, refs and umps – who were once treated like Supreme Court justices – are now feeling, or being forced to feel, compelled to apologize to players? Why? It changes absolutely nothing and further breaks down the line that once existed between players/coaches and refs/umps – the line that tended to keep everything on the up-and-up and one of the important reasons the NFL was perceived to be “fairer” than other pro sports (cough, cough…NBA), and thus a sport much easier for intelligent people to stomach when viewing.
    This country’s getting creepier by the day?!?!? Let the erosion continue.

  15. Give him props for admitting he screwed up. Does this set a precedent? If yes, who in their right mind would ever want to be a zebra.

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