We’re going to defer the full-blown explanation of the events of the final play of the Chargers-Steelers game and the provisions of the rule book that apply to the situation to the Ten-Pack on which we’re currently laboring.  (Writing words is hard work; please pity me.)
For now, though, the news is that referee Scott Green admitted after the game that the Steelers should have been given credit for the touchdown that safety Troy Polamalu scored as time expired.
 Via a lengthy replay review and conference, Green givethed a touchdown to the Steelers, and then takethed it away, claiming that an illegal forward pass that happened during the play requiring the officials to kill the play then and there.
“The rule was misinterpreted,” Green said.  “We should have let the play go through in the end, yes.  It was misinterpreted that instead of killing the play we should have let the play go through.”
Bottom line?  Anyone who took the Chargers and the points is very happy.  And anyone who took the Steelers and gave the points is peee-issed.
Here’s the video.



  1. On ESPN, Chris Berman was saying the real reason there was no TD was because “you cannot advance a recovered lateral.” This is not mentioned by the referee.
    Three huge mistakes by the officials on the play:
    1. There was no illegal forward pass at all during the play.
    2. There definitely was no illegal forward pass on the review.
    3. The Steelers should have been able to decline the penalty.

  2. They’re not changing the score either. What if there is a tie-breaker and the Steelers lose it because of points? The officials were horrible in that game and judging by the call at the end of the game that kept the score within the spread, one might think there were shady doings-a-foot.

  3. Why aren’t you screaming about a referee talking to the media and admitting he screwed up? You were railing against Hochuli for his screw up, answering emails and all that, but you’ve made two posts today about officials talking to the media, and no bitching and moaning from you guy(s)? Whats up?

  4. Dude, Old Testament references/language? Wtf!?
    Anyway, methinks (Shakespeare’s Old English) that the gamblers of Las Vegas are going to sue the NFL sooner or later for faulty outcomes of games. That 5h!7’5 costing them millions!

  5. The ref’s called 13 penalties against the the Steelers to the Chargers 2 penalties. Take 6 points away from the Steelers. Yeah, the ref’s have it in for the Steelers this year.

  6. Reason #1 not to gamble on sports — the officials don’t know the rules.
    Reason #2 is the previous post — the athletes don’t know the rules.

  7. Not to mention those of us who had the Steelers’ D in fantasy. How does the referee not know the rules? It’s not even an obscure rule, laterals happen all the time. Does the league need to supply them with a rulebook that they can consult on the sideline?

  8. If team employees aren’t allowed to criticize the officials and must use internal channels to express their concerns without being fined, why are the officials allowed to talk to the media at all, much less admit they screwed up?

  9. The refs sure do like to steal stuff from Polamalu.
    Ah, it’s not a big deal really though. The point tie breaker is for extreme conditions right?

  10. Florio could you comment on the last time a team was flagged for more than 100 yards of penalties and the other only 1 flag for 5 yards? And the unlikeliness that that is a true reflection of the gameplay….

  11. does the ref print out receipts of mistakes for me to hand to my bookie?
    Im still waiting for my refund from them for the donaghy refd spurs games.

  12. I guess the NFL might want to go a little farther than their post Donaghie “Have you manipulated games to affect the point spread outcome?” honor system investigation of their officials. I mean really. He watched the replay and decided no TD was the way to go, despite the replay showing obvious TD. The perfect opportunity since it won’t affect the outcome, only the spread.

  13. how does he see an illegal forward pass in that play after a review?
    this kind of crap is making a mockery of the nfl officiating. At least it was not a game changer this time.

  14. This game marked the 1st time that I honestly believe the refs were actively trying to fix the outcome.
    The fumble/td at the end of regulation was just 1 of at least 6-8 calls that varied from dubious to downright horrendous, all of which were in favor of SD.
    How many games have you seen where 1 team has 13 penalties and the other has just 2??
    At the very least, very shoddy work. However I strongly suspect some refs had $$ on the outcome/spread

  15. @VikingAP: This is actually a good one to hear people’s comments on precisely because it didn’t affect the outcome of the game — nobody can claim sour grapes or any of the other dismissive arguments that usually go along with these discussions.
    My take is: I thought the whole series of events was very odd, to say the least. I had no idea why they were reviewing it in the first place, since it didn’t matter whether or not the laterals were valid, given the outcome of the play.
    Then, even more odd is that the first announcement after the review was that one of the laterals was forward, and the result of the play was a touchdown. This was the correct decision, but again, why bother reviewing it in the first place for that? Why would it be important to determine if a lateral was forward when it wouldn’t change anything?
    Then, even odder still is an abrupt, completely incorrect reversal with no explanation. He obviously knew the rule, because he applied it correctly initially.
    Doesn’t add up.

  16. That clip doesn’t show the original announcement. I thought he missp0ke because he said illegal fwd pass then said TD and raised his arms. Watching it live I thought it had to be illeagl fwd pass and no TD or he meant to say no illegal fwd pass, so there should be a TD and that is why he raised his arms. Eh, Jim Harbaugh says that’s how to deliver the ‘ol screwgie, Stripes. Take it dry suckers, I had the Chargers.

  17. Anyone who watched the game could tell something was wrong early and often in that game. Phantom pass interference, many questonable holdong calls, and non-calls. It really started downhill when 2 Chargers were called for a late hit on Polamalu, that was nullified by a phantom blocking penalty. I’m surprised the ref’s let the safety stand.
    I don’t really attribute it to point shaving or fixing games – rather I think the Refs dislike the Steelers for constantly whining during and after games. Guys like Ward and Polamalu called out the refs in the media a few weeks back, so much so that the Commish had to make a special trip to Pittsburgh to speak to the team and “assure” them that there was no bias against the Steelers.
    Well if I was Ward, I’d submit the game tape as exhibit 1 as to why he thinks that way – but all he has really done is cause the Refs to have a quicker whistle when the ‘Burgh guys are involved.

  18. The Steelers should give that Lombardi to the Seahawks if they really want to talk about games being fixed.

  19. Oh yeah, there is NO WAY that any of those laterals could have been rules forward passes. NO WAY.
    That strains credulity.

  20. This just proves the point that the NFL rule book is too complicated and adjustments need to be made so that this game can be officiated correctly. Simplify the rules and the refs will call better games.

  21. whaaa whaaa whaa…. stamp feet…… pitch fit….. scream, bitch, whine, moan….. cry….. stamp feet more….
    another c-hawk fan drops by a steeler post.
    let it go dude, go get help. for yourself, for your family.

  22. It’s the Tomlinson pass that’s the forward pass. Watch it — he throws it from around the 25, and it ends up floating forward to the 26. It doesn’t initially look like it’s a forward pass because he throws it from behind his back.
    I was under the impression that an illegal forward pass killed the play as well. In the version of the rules the NFL actually prints for people, though, you can’t really tell..

  23. bigblue59 says: ”
    November 17th, 2008 at 8:03 am
    I have one thing to say
    Thank god we get Eli and not Muddy Rivers ”
    The success of the Giants can be attributed to the depth and strength of their team, in particular the offensive and defensive lines. Eli gets the glory because he is the QB, and because his last name is Manning. Eli is not a difference maker, he is a game manager.
    Any one with common sense would realize that last years SB MVP should not have gone to Eli.

  24. That was so obviously a fumbled lateral that it’s not even funny! That senile referee doesn’t know that they need to give me the damm whistle!
    Holy crap!

  25. I’m confused, as this was the last play of the game and admittedly a mistake was made on the call and a touchdown should’ve occurred, then why not just change the score to reflect that? Oh wait, that would really be admitting you made a mistake.

  26. What’s with the illegal forward pass call from the refs. Haven’t seen it very frequently and now we get it twice in the last two weeks. Both questionable?

  27. This should be expected in the last days of the Bush administration. A hard earned touchdown stolen from a blue collar team by an obviously corrupt official. Two months never seemed so long.

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