The standard for determining whether a call should be overturned by replay review, as once explained by former Packers and Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren, is whether 50 drunks in a bar would agree that it was a bad call.
As to the final play from last night’s Packers-Seahawks game, millions of sober people believe that the ruling on the field should have been overturned. Those millions don’t include the league office — and they definitely don’t include Seahawks coach Pete Carroll.
“They said that the call was correct, and after review [it] was correct . . . because it was a simultaneous catch,” Carroll said Tuesday, on ESPN 710′s Brock & Salk. “So that’s it. And that’s the NFL who’s in charge of the whole thing. That’s not the officials on the field, that’s the league office said that. And so, you know, it’s hard for everybody to accept, but that’s what it is and I don’t care.”
Regardless of whether there was indisputable visual evidence to reverse the touchdown, Carroll seems to think that the call as made on the field was the correct call.
“They were right on the point, looking right at it,” Carroll said of the officials. “Standing right over the thing. And they reviewed it. Whether they missed the push or not, obviously they missed the push in there, in the battle for the ball. But that stuff goes on all time. They see it, they don’t see it. That happens with the official officials. And so the result is they called it, the league backed it up, game over, we win.”
Carroll may feel that way, some of his players may feel that way, and some of the team’s fans may feel that way. But most objective observers believe it was a bad call, that it should have been overturned, and that the NFL’s stubborn insistence on winning the negotiation with the locked-out officials has created one of the most dubious moments in league history.
Congratulations, NFL. We can only wonder what the encore will be.