NFL issues "rule explanation" on game-winning play

The NFL addressed the non-facemask call heard around the league on Monday.

Mark Maske of the Washington Post reports that the league issued a “rule explanation” explaining that a facemask penalty is a judgment call and is not reviewable by instant replay.  No breaking news there; Florio mentioned that earlier Monday.

Whether such a penalty should be reviewable is up for debate

Tougher to argue is whether referee Scott Green can be entirely blamed for missing the call.  He’s got a lot to watch at the moment of impact, starting with a loose ball.

We’re looking forward to Vice President of Officiating Mike Pereira explain the judgment call further in his weekly segment with the NFL Network on Wednesday.

69 responses to “NFL issues "rule explanation" on game-winning play

  1. It’s funny how they they didn’t see that facemask, yet they call phantom penalties left and right on some teams (Raiders).
    The game is just too fast for these old refs. Send them to the MLB where they can just stand in one place and call out strike or ball.

  2. Other than Packer fans, who really cares? Like Trent Dilfer said in a radio show, next week games the refs will enforce this penalty to the point where “phantom hits” will also be called. Next.

  3. I’m a Vikings fan, so no real allegiance here, but I believe the facemask technically happened after the fumble/tuck/int/whatever, so to be technical, the worst case would be to assess at the insuing kickoff or force AZ to try to punch it in from the GB 15…

  4. Aaron hits Greg on the first play of overtime… The defense gets of the field once more during the game… Aaron doesn’t throw a pick… Donald doesn’t fumble…
    Give me those 4 before I even begin to complain about the calls. We lost the game, mainly because we beat ourselves.

  5. With all the precautions regards qb safety, you better believe he should have caught both penalties! He was looking right at him!!! If safely is truly the priority here then it should have been the only thing he was looking at. At least the fumble/interception could have benn reviewed if it was missed. These officials are flat out morons and its getting worse by the game.

  6. I am so sick of hearing about this. Who cares ? The ball was knocked loose first and Arizona would of still got the ball just 15 yards from the line of scrimmage.
    We should be talking about how many times Revis got called the other night for bogus calls. I think the refs had something personal against him !

  7. I am a Packers fan, but it is over.
    I am already excited for 2010.
    I would hope that the crew from that game is reviewed as there were other calls in that game that effected both teams that were awful well before these calls.
    I would hate to see them botch an even more significant playoff game or Super Bowl when a better crew is available.
    Green seems to have a record amassing for being involved in questionable game changing calls. Check his Wiki page.
    Cardinals deserved to win as Warner was brilliant and they made less mistakes.

  8. Forget the facemask call, what about the helmet to helmet hit two plays earlier??! I don’t blame the officials for this loss one bit, Packer defense was pitiful. But every time a quarterback gets touched the past few years a flag is thrown, and Rodgers gets nailed in the head TWICE with no call? Come on, he’s taken enough of a beating this year.

  9. Personally…I’m much more interested in the non-call on the helmet to helmet contact 2 players earlier. Seeing how the NFL made any contact to the QB’s head (and below the knees) a point of emphasis this year, how that call was missed was bordering on absurd.

  10. Mike My guys are perfect Pereira will tap dance around the subject doing his usual PR job. He will not acknowledge the growing dismay at the missed and botched calls that are only getting worse. NFL athletes are faster, stronger and much bigger then the were 15 years ago yet we still have 50 and 60 year old guys trying to keep up with them.

  11. Just like holding, roughing the kicker, and blocking in the back.
    Mike Wright was flagged for a weaker touch than that to Joe Flacco in week 4…

  12. Review for face masking? C’mon Man!!
    Then we can review every pass route for interference, then review every block for a hold, then review every qb drop back for a roughing or intentional grounding call…
    The facemask in question was not a penalty… but the Cheeseheads are making a huge issue out of it….

  13. Pack fan here…we lost. We are over it. No whining. Great game to watch…2 great QB going at it…the old veteran vs the up and comer.

  14. who cares? game over, cards won. Now everyone take a deep breath and get over it. Especially PFT.
    I know I know, it was SUPPOSED to be the packers that won. That’s why they all came out here to see it happen.
    Deal with it. Game over. No more shot at favre this year either. Just too funny.

  15. If the Packers defense holds the Cardinals to 44 points or under, the Packers win the game. The penalties sting but this one is all on the defense, and not on the refs.

  16. Judgement call ? Another totally and utterly lame explanation by the NFL. What judgement is involved when the hand is clearly grabbing the mask wrapped around the bars and pulling the head around ?

  17. I forgot to mention, please do “look forward” to the explaination PFT. It won’t change the outcome.

  18. If you look at the replay, the back judge is watching a hold go down while the face mask occurred and couldn’t see both.
    End of story.

  19. And when it’s all said and done, the Packers (aka the choice of all the blow-dry-boy talking heads to win the Superbowl), are still one-and-done in the playoffs.

  20. Whatever they say will be BS.
    Fact of the matter is they goofed in not calling a personal foul on Berry for the crown of the helmet hit to Rodgers’ facemask, and they goofed again in not calling the facemask by Adams on the game winning play. He grabbed his facemask – he didn’t brush it or make contact, his fingers were locked in it as Rodgers was brought to the ground.
    The refs failed. The league should just admit it and that’ll make it easier to move on.
    ‘Zona’s offense played lights out and Warner had a game that defies words. Outstanding doesn’t cover it. I’m proud of Green Bay for coming back the way they did but I just wish they lost fair and square rather than on two goofed calls. Better for Rackers to hit the field goal and send them home then to have that ignoramus Scott Green decide things.

  21. There were quite a few non penalties that will leave a sour taste GB’s mouth, the helmet to helmet hit Rodgers had took, and that OBVIOUS off pass interference call, but the Packers should have held on to the ball better on thier first two drives.

  22. In my judgment, that is not a facemasking penalty. The ball was fumbled before Adams contacted Rodgers’s facemask. Adams did not drag Rodgers down by the facemask. Rodgers’s head was not jerked down or hit hard. It was just a very good play.
    Rodgers is at fault for holding the ball that long. There were five pass rushers and only five pass blockers. He actually pumped but then did not throw it.
    Rodgers is a very good quarterback except he is indecisive. That is why he is not a big game quarterback, and that is why the Packers lost.

  23. Looked to me like Adams knocked the ball out of Rodgers hand before the face mask occured but the face mask happened before the ball landed in Dansby’s hands. It’s hard to tell whether or not he let go of the face mask. If he did, there would have been no need for a penalty because it wasn’t grabbing.

  24. Given that it was a blatant penalty, as a football fan, would you really want that play to get overturned for a penalty that would not have affected the outcome?

  25. You can bet it was Tom Brady they would have seen it. All a player has to do is look at Mrs. Brady funny and they throw a flag. This is dispicable that a big call is missed that decided a freaking playoff game. Unbelievable.

  26. MY GOD! Enough already, move on. No explanation needed. Probably should have been called, it wasn’t, and note to packer fans – there is no conspiracy, the game is so fast and the person responsible for making the call missed it because there was a lot going on during the play.
    Can someone get arrested so there is something new to talk about?

  27. What do you think Pereira is going to say? It’s an obvious face mask, Rogers was dragged down by the face mask but he’s going to dance around wether the official could see it.
    I’m willing to bet someone did see it and elected not to throw a flag. In a game where they’re always protecting the qb and he’s definitely being sacked in this instance, someone had to have their eyes on him.
    It’s not reviewable and cost GB the game. Just for the record, I am not partial to either team. I just don’t like having a team lose to officiating. Sudden death should be done away with, play the full quarter!

  28. Packer fans seem to be a bunch of crybabies. The reason you lost was because that “number 1 defense” was abused badly everytime Warner threw the ball. I haven’t seen more open receivers in my life. Embarrassing.

  29. A Grant County man apparently let the Green Bay Packers’ loss to the Arizona Cardinals get the better of him.
    Grant County sheriff’s officials say the 45-year-old Lancaster man was arrested for domestic abuse after he grabbed his wife around the neck Sunday night. Sheriff’s deputies say he told investigators he was ornery over the Packers’ 51-45 playoff loss to the Cardinals.
    He was taken to the Grant County Jail where he was later released after posting bond.

  30. You said it right, ‘the ref has many things to look for.” He sees the ball come out and now he has to watch if it hits the ground, which makes the tuck rule in effect. He changes his vision from the QB/DB contact to the football, he is no longer interested in that contact as it is moot. Anyone who has reffed knows you can’t see everything and I guarantee to you that there is no past or present refs on here crying about the non-call. It is no different than the NBA ref watching the hand-checking and misses the walk. Oh wait, maybe the NBA should instigate replay for that too. Let’s move on!
    One last thing on this: Most fans do not care about a tuck rule, or fumble, or int. All they care about is that the ball ended up in the mitts of the Defender and the game was over. We don’t care to have this over-analyzed to death. Was his arm going forward, did it hit the QB’s foot, was the QB’s foot moving toward the ball, was there a kicking motion, is it legal for the QB to kick the ball or have it hit his foot, is it legal for a Defensive lineman to catch the ball after the ball hit the QB’s foot, did it hit an OL first. We don’t care!

  31. the helmet to helmet play on rodgers before the final play was also missed. how any referee could have not seen that is beyond me. the holding penalty would have offset the 15 yard call that wasn’t made and they would have replayed the down. whatever, refs are human but that was obvious.

  32. Once that ball is out, which it clearly was before the contact was made, the QB is just another guy getting blocked. That raises the standard for a facemasking call rather sharply. This was a good non-call.

  33. Please, let it go – the players AND fans have.
    If the officials wanted to they could throw a flag on EVERY play, as there’s a lineman holding or illigally cutting a DL, a DB or WR contacting or holding past the 5 yd. point, or some sort of illegal formation or twitch. I don’t watch to see the yellow fly, and there is already too much of that.
    Remove the ambiguity: Don’t allow linemen to use there hands (old school, perhaps, yet MUCH easier to police), don’t allow contact between DB-WR, and flag the violator, and ANY contact with the face/facemask gets a flag, and eliminate the multiple variations of possession on catches, runs, or sacks.

  34. Again, an even bigger error was on 2nd down when holding was called.
    Green thought enough to get involved in the 2nd play from scrimmage to throw a holding flag (so he WASN’T thinking that he SHOUDN’T affect the game), and ignoring Rodgers getting a helmet to his own facemask. In a year when defenders were getting flagged for merely brushing a QB’s facemask, this was incomprehensible.
    Fine, call the holding, but then don’t ignore the roughing the passer. Or, fine, ignore the roughing the passer, but then don’t throw the flag on what could have been any other hold in the game.
    I’m sick of refs officiating games like they’re part of the NBA, and picking and choosing when to get involved. I’m pissed that the Packers appear to have gotten jobbed, just like my Vikings will get jobbed against the Cowpokes. (Jerry Jones’ money at work.)

  35. Whether it’s a facemask call is NOT the issue. There were two penalties on the player that hit Rodgers in the face and gripped his facemask as he pulled him to the ground
    It was a blow to the head! and it was probably called over a hundred times this year. It doesn’t matter either that he hit the ball first, it’s the same as it would be if rodgers threw an incompleete pass and that happend this a.m. had a blown up shot of the play and it was clear as day that the AZ player had a grip of the facemask. There is no denying there were 2 Penalties that could have been called

  36. Exactly. That ref Scotty Green has a lot to watch at that moment, which is why I do not understand why the NFL doesn’t add a few refs, sets of eyes, in the post-season as baseball does.
    I also realize that over 85% of the betting money was on the Packers, and Vegas doesn’t like to lose a lot of money and they rarely do lose a lot of money. I also realize that Charles Woodson is a great athelete, and for him to trip and fall on Fitzgerald’s first TD, then get shoved and accidenally fall on Fitz’s second TD is very odd. And never a penalty called, wow.

  37. Rodgers has lost possession prior to the facemask being contacted.
    1. Does this change the infraction from facemask violation to ‘hands-to-the-face’?
    2. Rodgers does not appear to be react to the facemask contact, ie. he is not being tackled by the facemask. Does the absence of neck and body motion indicate a facemask contact call and lesser penalty?
    3. Would the fumble, resulting in change of possession, be allowed? Or would the facemask call be a personal foul on the play with Packer retaining ball?
    4. If the fumble occurred prior to facemask violation would the team recovering be assessed the penalty from the spot of the foul or the spot of the recovery?

  38. How about the helmet-to-helmet blow Rodgers took from one of the Cards’ defenders just a play before? Was that a judgment call?

  39. You may be looking forward to Pereira, Gregg, but I’m getting a little sick of hearing him “explain” everything … unless he wants to explain that all this has gotten too complicated and the NFL is overturning instant replay.
    Incidentally, here’s an idea: How about anytime a ball comes loose and the player isn’t on the ground, we just call it a fumble? No tuck rules, no arm-in-motion. You lose the ball before your knee hits the ground, it’s a fumble. See, isn’t that nice and simple?

  40. Fine…ignore the facemask. What about the helmet to helmet contact prior to that? Tom Brady would have been throwing a tantrum on the ground if he would have had contact like that & he WOULD have gotten the call. Not that refs don’t have enough to watch & not that we need to baby quarterbacks…but that was a missed call that needed to be made.

  41. Wow, Perv, already claiming the refs were bought in case the Vikes lose??? You’re sounding like Beer Cheese. Maybe we need to get you a shoe phone.

  42. Florio or Greg, could one of you clarify whether it matters when the ball came loose? For two days I have been reading post after post stating “who cares, the ball was already out”. I was under the impression that, because the penalty would have occurred before the recovery of the football (posession change), then it would have been 1st Down Green Bay. Maybe if you address this, we can clean up the 10000 posts stating the same thing. Thanks.

  43. Only OUTSIDE of Wisconsin is anyone concerned with the facemask no-call.
    Great game by Warner.
    The only calls I have a problem with is the holding/roughing the passer play where Cullen Jenkins was thrown into Warner backwards and got flagged. He was celebrating, expecting the obvious hold. Well, that’s all fine and good, but if you call that atrocity, then without a doubt you HAVE to call the straight on, helmet to helmet hit.
    The best part? Not one Packer is whining over any calls. We may be whiner fans, but our team is a high character squad.
    Cowboys – 33
    Vikings – 17
    Mark it down.
    My prediction for our game?
    Packers – 45
    Cardinals – 44

  44. My goodness, you Packer fans are a bunch of crying little beyotches, aren’t you? Waaaaah!!!!! We want yards from penalties that didn’t affect the play!!!! What’s the matter? Is the Kwik E Mart all out of chili cheese dogs?
    Adams hit the ball and his hand landed on Rodgers’s facemask on the follow through. While it is true (based on the super slow motion replay) that he should have released his fingers from the helmet but didn’t, he did not jerk Rodgers’s facemask, did not twist his head, and most certainly did not drag him down by the facemask. Quit lying to yourselves, move out of your mom’s basement, find gainful employment, and move on with your lives.

  45. Grabbing a facemask at any time is illegal according to the rules.
    It’s time for full time refs…and more of them. And I like the “anytime the ball comes loose and the player isn’t on the ground” fumble rule. And don’t cite the arm in motion crap either. If the thrown ball is not obviously thrown, then it’s a fumble. The tuck rule is the most ridiculous thing ever.

  46. Disclaimer: I’m a Packers fan and i do NOT believe the refs cost us the game. (Our defense wears that crown.) However…
    Judgment calls should be reviewable by instant replay, especially when the play…
    A) results in a score
    B) results in a turnover
    Yes, referees are human & prone to errors…. but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to let the head referee review a “judgment call” play and make a final decision.
    Requiring a human being to make a “judgment call” in real-time seems counter-intuitive. Allow a coach to use one of his challenges and use the same rules currently in place. Require the play in question to have “indisputable evidence” to overturn the call (or non-call) on the field.

  47. Hopefully this week someone will catch a ball, get three feet down with no contact and then get tackled and loose possession.
    The dopey refs will rule it incomplete, review it and uphold, and then Mike Pereira will make up some interpretation outside of the rulebook to justify the call.

  48. Deb,
    Ask Adrian Peterson about the definition of a fumble. The guy gets belted in the ribs and arms more than anyone in the league. Does anyone see him bitching about anything? No, he knows that every single time he carries, defenders are going to be punching at the ball. I agree that there is a big need to simplify some rules, not to favor AD but just to avoid this sort of BS.
    I’ll bet Rackers is very very quietly staying away from any and all media today. He is the reason this is the hot topic today. He missed a chip shot and he knows it.

  49. The Packers only needed to be playing the Raiders and they would have gotten this call, and a police escort into the endzone for the win.

  50. The line for this game opened at Cardinals -3. By gametime, the line had moved to PACKERS -3 (these lines according to bodog). This means that TONS of money was put on Green Bay. I bet Vegas isn’t complaining about that ridiculous non-call. Makes you think sometimes…

  51. ACDC84 says:
    January 11, 2010 3:21 PM
    The line for this game opened at Cardinals -3. By gametime, the line had moved to PACKERS -3 (these lines according to bodog). This means that TONS of money was put on Green Bay. I bet Vegas isn’t complaining about that ridiculous non-call. Makes you think sometimes…
    yep, sure makes you think. bunch of these guy are all in cahoots and are going to risk going to jail for throwing a football game that is going to be closely watched by 100 million people.
    and don’t get me started on how the CIA had JFK assasinated.

  52. Beat that dead horse until you can’t recognize that it’s a horse anymore. It’s not like he grabbed his face mask and then he fumbled. The incidental hands to the face happened after the ball was out.
    Get over it already.
    The refs do a great job in my book and if you ever officiated a football game you’d know what I mean. It’s harder than Michael Jackson in a kiddy pool to get every call right especially in the NFL with things happening so fast.

  53. I’m a Packers fan and I don’t blame the refs for the loss. Yes, it was clearly a facemask and should have been called. But it wasn’t. That’s the way the game works out sometimes.
    Thanks for a fun season, Pack. Now get to work on fixing the defensive play calling and kicking game. This “youngest team in the NFL” has a lot of great years ahead.
    The commenters calling Packers fans “babies” need to step back and take a look around – very few Packers fans are whining about the non-call. If this happened to the Vikings, these boards would be on fire with crybabies. And if you’re one of the Packers fans doing the whining, you need to quiet down. You’re embarrassing yourself.
    This whole situation has shown me how little so many people actually know about the rules of the game. Take Nate_G, above, for instance – in his “opinion” the penalty would have been assessed “on the ensuing kickoff.” Of course, that’s 100% completely wrong, but he doesn’t let his ignorance stop him from just making things up.
    And it’s not just the commenters. ESPN’s own Adam Schefter posted on twitter last night, “One final tweet on end-of-game controversy — there was no penalty because, by rule, roughing the passer cannot be called on a fumble.” First, that’s only partially correct – a roughing the passer can indeed be called on a fumble, just not after a fumble. But it’s also neither here nor there – a facemask call is not the same as a “roughing the passer” call, and a facemask call can (and should) be made anywhere on the field, at any time.
    Ignorant commenters, I can understand. But an ESPN game analyst? What’s it take to get that job? Clearly, there’s no test on the rules.

  54. Um, Banvard316 …
    If you’re going to start carrying on about the Cards getting screwed in the Super Bowl by “so many calls I won’t even bother stating them” (uh-huh) “that no one but Cardinals fans cried out or even bothered to make notice” (Uh-Huh) then maybe, just maybe YOU have an old tampon stuck somewhere, too.
    Hmmm, how does it feel to win a hard-fought game only to have a bunch of whining crybaby fans claim the refs did it?
    And even while you’re calling out the Pack fans, you’re STILL whining about how the refs did it to you when they didn’t!!! You’re not only a WHINER, you’re a HYPOCRITE.
    Run along and look for that tampon, baby boy.

  55. The final play is not a black and white issue.
    a. For roughing the passer, is Karen still a passer if he fumbles?
    b. For facemask, this was borderline between incidental which you aren’t supposed to call, and a real facemask in which case, no one had possession, and it would go back to Green Bay with 15 yards.
    c. Calling it or not calling it are both justifiable, if anything Adams only had one finger so it is incidental. Additionally, it appears that Rodgers tried to kick the ball so if you do want to call a facemask, there would be offsetting penalties (and, Dansby was held on this play).
    d. I know everyone wants to point to the officials but they missed more that hurt Big Red than the Pack. It’s unfortunate that Green Bay fans will always wonder what would have happened IF they had called a facemask or roughing the passer but if these were such important penalties, wouldn’t the NFL have them as rules you call when found on replay, which they don’t?
    e. the NFL explained it as the refs were looking for the ball; in other words, if Karen had not of fumbled first, then they would have noticed it
    f. the question I have is: does it matter if it’s a fumble or an interception if a passer is roughed while the ball is in the air?
    By the way, I’m being silly when I call him Karen. Anyone who blames him for missing Greg Jennings or holding onto the ball too long is complaining about one of the best quarterback performances in history.

  56. “Judgment call”. Translation: don’t completelyembarrass the refs.
    Get it right. Embrace the right call, dammit, no matter what. Seems so simple.

  57. The rule book sez that if the facemask occurred before the fumble recovery that the Pack gets the ball back, 15 yd. penalty applied and first down.

  58. Packer fans Rogers is not Tom Brady! If he was he would of got the facemask called a roughing the passer and sorry Cardinals you can not win because the great Tom Brady just got hit by the defense and that is inexcusable. Nevermind the Packers the fans got robbed from a great ending to what could be one of the greatest playoffs game.

  59. Rosenthal didn’t give us the complete picture here. ALl he said is “It’s a judgement call.” That’s not what the NFL said. Here is what they did say:
    A “facemask” penalty is a judgment call that is not reviewable by replay.
    Rule 12, Section 2, Article 5 of the NFL Rule Book (page 81) states that “no player shall twist, turn, or pull the facemask of an opponent in any direction.”
    The Rule Book describes the penalty as follows:
    “Penalty: For twisting, turning or pulling the mask: loss of 15 yards. A personal foul. The player may be disqualified if the action is judged by the official(s) to be of a flagrant nature.”
    The Rule Book describes an approved ruling as it relates to facemask penalties (page 81).
    “A.R. 12.12 – Third-and-10 on A30. Runner A1 runs to the A33, where he is tackled by B1, who incidentally grasps A1’s facemask on the tackle, but it is not a twist, turn or pull. Ruling: A’s ball, fourth-and-seven, on A33. No foul.”

  60. Aaron Rodgers took the high road. The majority of Pack fans posting on this site cop to the Packers being outplayed and downplay the missed calls, taking the high road. Looking back over the days’s posts, the low road is populated almost exclusively by the resident Vike trolls, outnumbering Pack whiners about three to one, hating on the Packers and showing a surpising lack of knowledge about the rules, what is or isn’t a penalty, and how they are enforced on turnovers. How sad is that. I have family in Minnesota for generations, so I know they don’t represent the fanbase, but how did they all end up here?

  61. I’d love to see the NFL’s explanation why the following rule doesn’t apply:
    Rule 12, Section 2, Article 13(3) plainly states that defenders may not “hit the passer, or use hands, arms, or other parts of the body to hit the passer in the head, neck, or face.”

  62. It should be reviewable, but not challengeable.
    If the officials feel the need to check the game winning drive/play (or any other in my opinion, as long as they don’t take excessive use of it), then I don’t see anything wrong with it.

  63. It happened during the play, after the fumble.
    If any penalty was enforced, it should have been 15 yards from the spot of the foul w/ Arizon a possession.
    A reason a certain number of casual fans do not like football is that it is increasingly becoming more & more technical with all these minor nuances that are not interesting to Joe Casual fan. I was watching a game once, when a guy finally stood up & said “stupid lawyers” while walking away after a ref called some obscure personal foul.
    Revis was the one player that got screwed on calls during Wild Card weekend.
    Another drop in the bucket for why NFL refs need to be paid full-time. The game brings in too much attention & money. The NFL should back this for reasons of “integrity of the game” that they like to spout off on so much.

  64. berry hit rodgers hemet-to-helmet right before that, fitzgerald got away with off. pass interefence on a touchdown play, jenkins was blocked into warner on the fitzgerald touchdown, yet was called for roughing the passer, the facemask on rodgers was missed, and it comes down to rodgers won’t get the calls that manning, brady & farve get, great game, officating SUCKS

  65. Ancharo – if a penalty would have been called, GB retains possession because the infraction occurred BEFORE AZ secured possession.

  66. @DaDaubs: I’m not sure exactly how the rules are worded, but it seems reasonable that because the ball was fumbled Rodgers would no longer be the “passer” and would be under the same rules as all the other players on the field.

  67. LouDawg –
    Thank you so much!!
    I have posted several times how Florio, intentionally or not, misrepresented the facemask rule. He claimed since the incidental facemask rule was dropped that any contact with the facemask resulted in a 15 yard penalty. WRONG!!
    The dropping of the rule resulted in the exact opposite – contact with the facemask now does not result in a penalty.
    The facemask must be twisted, turned or pulled in order for it to be a penalty. The remainder of the league’s statement, intentionally deleted from this story I’m sure, indicated in the ref’s judgement, none of those three qualifications were met. Watch the play again and you can see the mask was never twisted, turned or pulled.
    xyzzy –
    While I agree with most of your post, your dealing with semantics on the Schefter tweet about the fumble. He’s simply clarifying why there wasn’t a flag thrown for a blow to the QB’s head – once he fumbled he no longer is considered a passer thus the rule doesn’t apply.
    How would’ve the helmet to helmet non-call changed the outcome had it been called? Simply off-setting penalties. GB may have called the same on the next down anyways with the same results.

  68. Why wasn’t it the “Tuck Rule?”
    That is what I want to know. Is it because the ball didn’t hit the ground?

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