Bill Levy giveth. And Bill Leavy taketh away.
The same referee whom many regard as the man who helped deliver the Super Bowl XL trophy to the Steelers via multiple bad calls for which he eventually expressed regret led the crew that cost the Steelers a chance to win Super Bowl XLVIII.
The NFL has acknowledged that the officials failed to call a foul on the Chargers during a potential game-winning field goal try by the Chiefs. If kicker Ryan Succop had made the field goal and the Chiefs had won the game, the Steelers would have qualified for the AFC playoffs.
As explained last night, a new rule for 2013 prohibits teams from putting more than six players on the line of scrimmage to either side of the snapper during a field-goal try. The Chargers clearly had seven men on the line to the left of the Chiefs’ snapper.
The infraction is not currently subject to replay review, which means that the officials who were standing directly behind the defensive formation should have seen it. They didn’t.
If the flag had been thrown, the Chiefs would have gotten a second chance at the missed 41-yard field goal, from five yards closer. If that kick had gone through, the Chiefs would have won, the Chargers would have lost, and the Steelers would be getting ready for a trip to Cincinnati.