Just before the 49ers scored their go-ahead touchdown at the end of the first half on Sunday, they appeared to get away with having 12 players in their offensive huddle, without getting a penalty.
But NFL head of officiating Dean Blandino says that in reality, the referee was right not to flag the 49ers. Blandino said the 49ers only had 12 in their huddle at a time when the play clock wasn’t running, and that the 12th player ran to the sideline before the ball was ready to play, which means there is no penalty.
“The play clock has not started, and you can’t have a penalty for 12 in the huddle until the play clock has started,” Blandino said on NFL Network. “That was handled properly, and they had 11 men when the play clock had started.”
A five-yard penalty would have moved the 49ers to the 6-yard line on the next play, but the 49ers stayed on the 1-yard line and scored a touchdown on the next play.