We’d hate to see what this game would look like if referee Gene Steratore’s all-star crew weren’t being extra-vigilant about keeping things under control.
A punt play early in the second quarter of Sunday’s NFC title game featured a couple of egregious fouls that the officials missed. One by each team.
First, Seahawks receiver/gunner Ricardo Lockette grabbed the facemask and removed the helmet of San Francisco running back/punt returner LaMichael James, after James muffed the punt.
Before that, the Seattle gunner on the other side of the field — Jeremy Lane — took an upper arm from someone in street clothes on the 49ers sideline.
While it’s possible the person delivering the hit was merely protecting himself, he seemed to deliberately hit Lane, who bounced up and kept going.
We’re trying to identify the person who applied the hit. It was either an inactive player or a member of the San Francisco non-playing staff.