Carroll chewed out ref for not calling offensive pass interference


Heading into the Super Bowl, one of the big questions was whether the officials would let Seattle’s physical secondary get away with pass interference. As it turned out, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll was the one who thought the officials were allowing too much physical play, and Carroll had some strong words for the officials for not calling offensive pass interference on the Broncos.

On an incomplete deep pass along the sideline in the second half, Broncos receiver Demaryius Thomas bumped Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, knocking him off. As shown on Inside the NFL, that led to Carroll chewing out the nearest official for failing to throw a flag for a penalty that, in Carroll’s opinion, cost the Seahawks an interception..

“You didn’t see it? He shoved the guy right on the ground,” Carroll told field judge Scott Steenson. “Sherman was gonna make that catch.”

Steenson replied that it was Sherman who caused the contact by slowing down in front of Thomas, but Carroll said Sherman was only slowing down to adjust to the ball in the air, and that Sherman would have caught it if Thomas hadn’t run into him.

“He slowed down to catch the football! He interferes with our chance to catch the football,” Carroll said.

Steenson again began to explain why he didn’t throw a flag, but Carroll was getting increasingly angry.

“What are you talking about? What do you mean he slowed down? He slowed down to catch the football,” Carroll said.

Steenson replied, “That’s not the way I saw it,” and Carroll (who seemed to understand that he wasn’t going to win the argument) said, “I can live with that.”

The game was such a blowout that most people didn’t pay much attention to the officiating one way or the other. But Carroll wanted to make sure the officials heard from him, even after the game was out of reach.

77 responses to “Carroll chewed out ref for not calling offensive pass interference

  1. Thank you Seahawks for the dominating victory. I’ve been terrified of bad officiating, even when it goes our way. No excuses

  2. It would never happen under Goodell but I’d love to see one game, just one game with absolutely no rules or flags.

    I want bump & run coverage, clothesline tackles, high steps on the way to the end zone.

    As far as Carroll, I guess the key to maintaining plausible deniability is acting like he’s concerned about contact.

    Let the players play. And where’s that waiver form…

  3. He was right. Sherman was absolutely going to rake in that INT if Thomas didn’t get away with that flagrant OPI. Peyton lobbed up there precisely the type of wounded duck Sherman was talking about in his weekly SI column.

  4. Lynn Swann used to routinely catch balls exactly like that play.

    Today’s receivers spend more time in the weight room and are more physical, but I’m not so sure they have the same elite pass-catching ability of previous generations.

    Fred Biletnikoff and Todd Christensen would have caught balls like that 10 times out of 10 back in the 70’s for the Raiders. Today’s receivers just don’t have the same sense of balance and ability to focus on a ball in the air and catch a deep ball while being brutalized by a defender.

  5. Likely no more complaining then any other coach at any other time on a borderline call. Just caught with the editing done by the NFL.

    Great response though to end it by PC.

  6. Vikings Franchise…Franchise?LOL

    Seahawks are a Franchise. You know, where all legitimate Viking players go to be part of a team and real Franchise.

    People, Super Bowl Champs need no excuses or haters. Realize you wish your team was Seattle. Move on to draft issues. Probably early round picks….right?

  7. A coach was upset with a call? Any more insights gleaned from watching the Super Bowl mic-ed up program?

  8. Pete Carroll should just count his blessings. If not for the NFL, he would be coaching high school football (after his multiple violations at USC)

  9. Weren’t they already up…at least 29-0 by then?

    Although, if Sherman was slowing down. Why didn’t he throw the flag for defensive pass interference? His logic is severely flawed. The flag should have been thrown.

  10. I wonder if Pete Carroll sees the irony about his complaining that an opponent interfered with one of his player’s trying to catch a ball. That it was Richard Sherman who Thomas interfered with is even more rich.

  11. Does anyone still care about this Super Bowl? It didn’t entertain, but it did confirm some things. Peyton Manning is overrated, and Seattle was the best team. Imagine in the Super Bowl Peyton won the other QB wasn’t Rex Grossman? Sorry, his Legacy is what it is. I just hope the AFC sends someone else to get lumped up next
    year. Peyton’s act is old.

  12. Left USC in shambles with sanctions, then whined his way to a SB ring. Mad props to Slippery Pete.

  13. so if Jim Harbaugh calls out a ref for poor officiating the seahawk fans climb all over here and call him whiner etc…but apparently it is OK for cheater carroll to do the same thing!

  14. I saw it exactly as Carroll saw it. One thing about Manning, he almost always gets the calls in his favor. The field judge’s response is priceless (total bs). Demaryius Thomas wasn’t playing the ball he was just shoving the defender who had position and who would have likely intercepted the pass sans the illegal contact.

  15. That was a classic case of offensive pass interference. If there is an example in the rule book, it must look exactly like that.

    The defender turned to run for the ball and was tackled by the WR. It’s really very simple.

  16. If I remember right there was an offensive pass interference called in the game. I bet it came after after Carroll yelled at the ref.

    C’mon some of you Vikings fans. You’re making comments that are just plane stupid. Do NOT emulate Mcnasty, tokyosoundblaster and other idiots. I just looks bad on all of us.

  17. No, it wasn’t worse than Welker-Talib but it was just as obvious. Belichick and Carroll almost never publicly complain about the refs with some very clear exceptions. The fact that Bill spoke about the Welker suicide mission on Talib and Pete spoke out about the uncalled OPI by Thomas is illuminating for those that care about the truth.

  18. “Demaryius Thomas bumped Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman” I guess you agree with the ref if “that’s how you saw it”.

    Also, I guess you are trying to pull in readers with this headline. From your quotes of what Carroll said, I would call that more of a conversation. Unless he was Shermaning by being loud and in the moment.

  19. Wow, that’s rich. Maybe when the league allows you to constantly bend a rule to your own advantage, you should keep your mouth shut the one time it works out for your opponent.

  20. All the people who like to say that Seattle gets away with stuff clearly haven’t watched the film, huh? I heard Brian Dawkins whining (because he picked Denver), but the reality is Browner is the one who did most of the illegal contact and holding. Not Sherman. Maxwell got away with two pass interferences.

    However, the narrative has brainwashed fans, and it’s not going to be undone, despite facts that show that Seattle doesn’t comment defensive penalties any more than half the teams in the league, and not nearly as much as people like to claim.

  21. Now that’s laughable. Only team in the league who admittedly hold and interfere on every play are complaining about others doing it in return. what a crock. Seahawk’s secondary gets away with murder. Half the time I wonder how they haven’t ripped a wrs jersey clean off their pads. Ridiculous.

  22. Have pete and the seahawks ever benefitted from a blatant OPI that was never called?…….If I try hard enough, I can think of one specific example….

  23. I thought that particular play was borderline, probably a good no call.

    That said, the Broncos do get away with a lot of offensive interference. I read somewhere that they were only called for offensive interference six times all season. If you watched any of their games you know that they could easily be called six times EVERY game.

    I’m not talking about just the pick plays either. The plays where they really get away with it are the screen passes. Their WRs routinely block downfield well before the ball is thrown.

    Ive been saying this all season. I watched every Broncos game this season because I had Manning as my FF QB.

  24. That was absolutely OPI & I saw it right when it occurred. To be fair, we probably got away with a DPI on Earl so I can live with it too.

  25. So he coaches his own secondary to hold on every play since it won’t be called all the time and gives them an unfair advantage, but he complains about offensive PI ?


  26. I hate that a DB in front of a running receiver must get out of the way…pathetic to give the receiver the right of way. Why battle for position at all if it’s meaningless under the rules.

  27. It blows my mind how people could possibly believe that today’s receivers aren’t as good as the receivers “back in the good old days”.

    The level of training with strength and speed coaches, improvements in nutrition, improvements in strategy and improvements in technique put these guys at a level only dreamed of by old school guys.

    I’m a huge seahawk homer, but if Steve Largent was on the team today, he’d probably be an average slot receiver.

  28. I appreciate Carroll advocating for his team and all, but let’s be real here. The ‘Hawks have been huuuuge beneficiaries of untold numbers of calls and non-calls. Their DBs and LBs are regularly caught mugging receivers – and they’ve even benefitted from special teams non-calls (see ‘Niner game where a (key) roughing-the-kicker call was botched).

  29. Pete Carroll and the Hawks took the entire NFL to school during the SB, showing them all how the game of football is played. They also served notice to all the prime-donna players, and wanna-be teams, that they are gonna have to earn their paychecks.
    Finally, they kicked the game up a bunch of notches. No more wuss-ball! So all those dainty ladies, who don’t wanna be touched while they are trying to catch the ball, better find a new line of work.

  30. My focus was on the Receivers vs DB’s all game long….

    As much jersey stretching and contact past 5 yards, Carrol should take his trophy and quietly go home happy.

  31. Hey Pete,
    I didn’t hear you crying when Sidney Rice hitched a piggy-back ride on Packers DB Sam Shields and it was called DPI. Or when Golden Tate got away with his obvious shove on Shields on the Fail Mary.

  32. Totally insignificant play in retrospect but are you kidding me with that explanation? Sherman slowed down so everything is fair game? Of course he slowed down… to catch the ball!

  33. What has to hurt more to Viking fans than Percy Harvin with two big plays and a KO return TD, is the fact that Tavares Jackson not only got a ring, but got in to play in the SB game itself.

  34. Whats with all the Vike fans on every Seattle page? Theres no history between the two teams, not division rivals. Don’t get it.

    The narrative is that Sea db’s hold more then the rest. I honestly don’t watch every team so I’ve no idea. The longer thats assumed fact though you would think it would come back to bite them at the worst time, apparently not in this years super bowl though. Bummed its all over, is it September yet.

  35. Seattle fans are representing their point of view, so are Denver’s fans. What’s up with Vikings fan talking smack about either team? Half the people in the United States weren’t alive when the Vikings last got pummeled in the SB.

    Denver doesn’t have guys who can get open via their elite talent, so they run a lot of pick plays. They take advantage of the fact officials aren’t going to call it on every play.

    Now that it’s pretty well known how reliant they are on the picks, they are going to have to bring in someone on the outside with speed. As of now, it looks like the Broncos made the SB based upon the lack of talent in the AFC.

  36. Carroll is shrewd but, of course, without conscience. One of the reasons I do not think the Seahawks will repeat is that either their secondary will not get away with holding and hitting beyond five yards (as they did this year), or other teams will adopt the Seahawks strategy of holding and hitting beyond five yards to dare the refs to throw the flag on every play.

  37. This is not in the least surprising. I mean it was blatant PI. And if Sherman was a receiver instead of a DB, the PI would have been called.

    This has become a QB league, where every rule change has benefited the offense. Thus you have 15 QB’s each year throwing for over 4000 yards. Ridiculous really.

    Even the so-called rule changes to guard against injury are just ways to keep the chains moving. I mean if Goodell was really serious about injuries he would outlaw cut-blocks and crack-backs and picks from the receivers. How many times have we seen a receiver completely blind side a DB and blow him up?! No call ever. Yet DB’s routinely get calls for hitting receivers too hard, even if it is legal.

    Remember when receivers were scared to run across the middle of the field in a zone? Yeah, that seems like a lifetime ago. Now QB’s can throw these “hospital” passes across the middle and safeties have to make sure the receivers are not defenseless before they can make a play. Terrible IMO!

  38. I’m by no means a Pete Carroll fan, but he hardly chewed the guy out. As some others have said, it was a discussion. And if you watch the entire episode, after he says he can live with the refs explanation of “that’s not the way I saw it”, he also said “that’s why that guy’s in the Super Bowl”. Giving him props for the way he handled himself. So while I’d love to join in on the Carroll bashing, completely unwarranted in this case.

  39. Not sure why Carroll had any problems with the refs at all. He was in a SuperBowl where his opponents looked like cast members of The Walking Dead. The Seahawks couldn’t have lost that SuperBowl if they played the game with 8 players – total. What an embarrassment for the NFL. If I’m an advertiser I’m asking for a refund.

  40. what was Carroll saying to the official when Demaryius Thomas was being tackled before the ball got to him and still caught the touchdown and there was no flag? Crickets.

  41. “Now that it’s pretty well known how reliant they are on the picks, they are going to have to bring in someone on the outside with speed. As of now, it looks like the Broncos made the SB based upon the lack of talent in the AFC.”

    And just who is supposed to throw to this new receiver on the outside with speed? Manning??

    Just ain’t gonna happen. Manning can’t throw hard past 15 yards anymore.

  42. Watch the video of it on It would be a stretch to say that Pete was chewing the ref out. He was just making it known that he disagreed with the call but it was more of a conversation than anything.

  43. Sherman slowed down in front of Thomas so Thomas couldn’t make the catch….defensive pass interference. Thomas returned the favor by pulling on Sherman…offensive pass interference. Good no call, but Denver is on the losing end of that because a double penalty results in a replay of the down.

    Sherman has no chance against Thomas if they enforce the rules correctly.

    Mainly, I want Thomas on the Vikings…

  44. I see there is still no loss of whiny punks out there referring to the Seahawks by little scummy names. Still jealous because they last to the Seahawks. LOL!!!

    As for dual prime and his comment:
    “Took the Seasquacks 38 years to win a SB, 4 less than the Pats but not enough to proclaim greatness! Show some class fans. Pete isn’t going to!”

    Sure they are great…this year…which is the ONLY year that matters. And next year, should they win again (and they are in a very good position to do just that..better than most teams after a win) then they’ll be great again.
    And Pete shows a lot of class…much more than many other coaches..especially ones who throw temper tantrums on the sideline and throw their clipboards and jump up and down and scream and whine. (Harbaugh!) Or lead spy rings on opposing teams (Ryan) Or pay bounties for debilitating hits on opposing players (Payton) and so forth…so please, SHADDUP!

    So many whiners…so little cheese. and two things we know for sure, Seattle will be dominate again…and you whiners will be back in droves again as well.

  45. Ok Pete…that is unsportsmanlike and it will cost you $100K.

    And as for mustang6984 take your own advice and shut up.

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