Blandino: That facemask call is made “almost every time”

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It wasn’t just the 61-yard Hail Mary to win the game that had people buzzing in the aftermath of the Packers’ 27-23 win over the Lions. Twitter wanted to know if the play should have even happened.

The facemask call on the play before against Devin Taylor of the Lions gave the Packers an untimed down. Though Taylor’s hand clearly touched the facemask of Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, further and slower replays left plenty of question as to whether Taylor actually grabbed the facemask and should have been flagged.

It didn’t take long for Dean Blandino, the NFL’s VP of officiating, to tweet that an official “is going to make that call almost every time.”

So, Blandino didn’t say the call was right — or wrong. He just said he understands it being made.

The full Blandino tweet read: “Hand up to the mask, quick grab with finger and head gets turned. At full speed official is going to make that call almost every time.”

69 responses to “Blandino: That facemask call is made “almost every time”

  1. It was like Suh came back for a single play to save the Packers. That facemask was exactly the kind of undisciplined unnecessary stuff that Suh used to pull all the time with Schwartz as head coach. Caldwell has brought some discipline to this team and they’re headed in the right direction but pockets of stupidity remain.

  2. Almost is the key word from him. This means he is excusing the poor call.

    The bad thing is the ref starring at the play didn’t throw the flag. The one behind Rogers who didn’t have a view did. Poor mechanics by the refs.

  3. Not that whether he actually grabbed his face mask matters or not. I’m a Viking fan, my wife is a Packers fan.
    I just want games refereed fairly. Astounding amount of questionable calls always favoring what makes money for the league means the NFL feels that their confidence game won’t be believed by all of us who know the refs are doing it at the league’s direction.
    Morelli, Anderson, Hochuli, Boger, Leavy, et al don’t get graded on call accuracy, but on agenda following.
    When it finally gets openly and fully exposed, the NFL will have pocketed untold wealth like the thieves in the night they are.

  4. He never grabbed. Should have never been called. Just looked bad cause Rodgers got pulled down by shoulder. Isn’t there a lesser of two calls also? The league can easily say the game ended there cause there was no face mask and give Detroit the W.

  5. So he’s admitting that his officials are going to make THE WRONG CALL every time. What a clown.

  6. It is hard to blame the officials on that. Full speed from an angle opposite from the main broadcast camera, can’t blame him.

    But that said, why is something so crucial left up to such uncertainty? NFL needs to embrace technology. Especially on prime-time games, they have a whole fleet working in New York who can view plays from multiple angles, as they happen. There doesn’t even need to be a delay…they see things clearly, live, and radio everything in to the refs on the field.

  7. That call completely ruined that game. The NFL needs to get their a t together, seeing star players getting phantom calls like that which decide the game is ruining their product. Leaves a sour taste in my mouth seeing games decided like that.

  8. What Deano meant to say was that an official will make that call almost every time, unless he misses it, which is totally possible, because my department, like the rest of the NFL office, is completely incompetent.

  9. In Green Bay, it’s not “almost every time” for us. We expect every call, every time. We’re arrogant. What do you expect?

  10. There’s a possibility that when you slow the video down to microseconds he might not have grabbed the facemask enough for it to be a penalty.
    Did he touch the facemask? Yes.
    Was Aaron’s head turned? Yes.
    This implies that the player applied enough controlled force to the facemask to turn Aaron’s head, requiring by definition of the rule a flag for facemasking.

    On the last play of the game when there’s 2 defenders around the QB and he has no one to lateral it too it’s not hard to tackle him without your hands going near his facemask.

  11. NFL officiating is out of control. What happened to Integrity of the Game? Refs get a pass every week. No fines, no suspensions, just excuses. I know they are unionized and these punishments are not collectively bargained, but geesh!!!

  12. In a couple of days, Blandino will issue an utterly meaningless apology to the Lions for that bad call costing them the game.

  13. Blandino is right.

    If you have an issue with that judgement call, you should have an issue with the non-call DPI on third down. Anyone chirping about that? Didn’t think so.

    Bat the ball down, and we aren’t having this conversation.

    Packers win.

  14. You gotta think that with the leagues bass ackwards way of dealing with things at some point they will apply domain rights to all video and replays making it so nothing can be replayed in slow motion without consent. Obviously the technology exists to make sure these things are right. It’s been available for a decade at least but all we ever hear is talk about wanting to put something in place that gets it right.

  15. Let me know when you need someone to help pack up your office, Dean. Love to help out a stand-up guy like you.

  16. That sound like a cover his fingers was never in or had a grip on the mask Rogers move his head to give it the look of it being pull.

    Smart on Rogers part.

  17. The officials are no longer able to follow the game, it’s as simple as that. Lions where robbed.

  18. The simple answer is that ALL game changing plays should be reviewed. Period. And I’m a Seahawk fan, and if that means that we lost to Detroit on that “batting” so be it.

    It’s just wrong to allow this BS to affect the outcome.


  19. The part Blandino left out is the ref needs to ACTUALLY SEE A PENALTY in order to think it happened, in order to call it every time. The ref who threw the flag was behind Rodgers and couldn’t see his facemask or Taylor’s hand. He assumed it was a penalty, but didn’t see it, which is against the NFL’s instructions. That’s the problem.

    I can see why the ref thought it, but without seeing it actually happen he should have relied on others with a better view. Perhaps relying on the ref who was just in front of the play and was staring right at it, and didn’t throw his flag, may have been a good idea. If the ref in front thought it was a facemask, you could accept the mistake because it looked like it could have been a penalty at game speed. Since he didn’t throw his flag he must have realized Taylor didn’t grab the facemask, and he should have stepped forward and said something to the crew so they could waive it off. That was the second problem; that he didn’t.

    Blandino knows full well that the refs aren’t suppose to be throwing flags for penalties based on assumptions.

  20. And this is a clear reason that the league needs to re-vamp the challenge system. If you give each coach 2 challenges per half, and 1 for overtime, and allow them to challenge any play or any call, you eliminate these kinds of controversies. I’m glad the Packers won, but I am disappointed that we now start another week with a cloud of controversy over an issue that could be easily fixed.

  21. Blandino, Goodelll and the owners who pull their puppet strings are the true threat to the “integrity of the game”

    I could do a better job as commissioner

    And that’s not an exaggeration

  22. So, what Blandino is really saying is that the refs are “going to screw up that call almost every time, and we’re OK with that.” C’mon NFL, integrity of the game! Integrity of the game!! Nothing is more important than the integrity of the game!!!

    Get it right. Make everything challengeable.

  23. This is why everything should be reviewable. If an official is going to call penalties that he didn’t see (because it didn’t happen he couldn’t possibly have seen it), then there has to be a way to correct those mistakes.

  24. The problem with his statement is that it doesn’t make it right. The nfl hands out personal fouls like candy. A personal foul was never meant to have this big of an impact of the game. It’s supposed to be for egregious fouls. Here, a players facemask was arguably grazed. With no twisting grabbing or pulling. It’s not a facemask personal foul. And the director of officiating shouldn’t condone a bad call.

  25. Considering the fact that real facemask penalties aren’t always called, this tweet almost seems dishonest. And sounds like he’s essentially telling players that if they jerk their heads when a hand is near their facemask, they stand a good chance of getting the call regardless of whether the facemask was actually grabbed.

    Now, it wasn’t surprising they missed the call. At real speed, it looked like the facemask had clearly been yanked and it was only in slow motion that it was apparent that wasn’t the case. Just say that. Don’t do like Blandino and those clowns on the broadcast and insist it was the correct call.

  26. So even though it doesn’t violate the rule as written, it would be called every time?

    And Blandino doesn’t see that as a problem?

    Either rewrite the rule or don’t call it.

    The same genius who just this week admitted CORRECTABLE errors are at the same rate as last year.

    As if not improving on correctable errors is a good thing.

    Seriously – I’ve been a fan since the early 60s. It was bad when they finally brought in replay and though they had to tweak that process several times it made things better.

    Somehow things have regressed – and I can only conclude it’s Roger and Dean.

  27. Great game, Detroit BLEW a 20 POINT LEAD but NFL IDIOTS will blame the refs, lol.

    Congrats GB you guys DESERVED that game, Detroit is still a horrible team.

  28. If you put your hands there, you’ll get called, most of the time. I don’t think this is news, the Lions are just using excuses here. Sure it was tough, but everyone knows the rules, and more importantly, know how those rules will be interpreted. This is why players get away with infractions, they know how they’ll be seen, and how important officials will see them. They know how to hit someone illegally but try to make it look accidental or almost legal. Just watch the video of Suh stomping on someone, kind of looks accidental sometimes doesn’t it, and maybe it is.

  29. I officiate high school football, basketball, and baseball. By far, football is the toughest to call. Big field, outstanding athletes, everyone clustered up closely during a play. I’m not absolving bad calls. Just that it’s the toughest sport to call.

  30. To the Fudgie fans carping about the alleged pass interference on the play before, that should have been OFFENSIVE interference. The DB would have picked a horrible throw but the receiver tackled him before the ball got there. The league tried to gift GB a win on T-giving, failed, and made up for it here.

    Enjoy your police escort to an undeserved playoff spot.

  31. Enjoy your police escort to an undeserved playoff spot.
    Last I checked, the Packers were still in the playoffs with or without the win yesterday. You should really pay more attention to the NFL.

    And pay more attention to the fact that the Lions were not going to miraculously sneak into the playoffs regardless of what happened.

  32. Generally speaking, Blandino is a paid shill and a liar, so this shouldn’t come as a surprise. His comments about moving officiating crews on Dan Patrick yesterday were completely absurd. He even contradicted himself in one sentence.

  33. At no point did his hand…or a finger for that matter…grab the face mask. The penalty is grabbing the face mask…not running your hand over it.

    This is as crucial a call…obviously…as whether or not a receiver got his second foot in. Both can be extremely difficult to see and call correctly on the field real-time. One is subject to review the other is not. Ridiculous.

    This is not a “judgement” call like a lot of penalties. You either grab the mask or you don’t.

    That said, as a life-long Lions fan, if I could have placed a bet on whether or not GB would score that touchdown, I would have bet my last penny on yes. We suck.

  34. Done with the NFL no integrity, its rigged. Packers will always get benefit of doubt because they are a glory franchise, the Lions are no one. I as a lions fans can handle losing if we are bad but to continually have games decided by the refs smells fishy to me. I’m done and many other friends of mine have expressed the same to me. The NFL will never get another dollar from ke as long as I live. Nice no call on two blocks in the back on the hail Mary. Much more obvious then a phantom no call. That’s 3 games stolen in the last calendar year from the lions the refs admitted they were wrong in the other two, so its not my imagination. Until the NFL changes its bias and has accountability for refs I will stay away.

  35. I have no dog in this fight, but that was NO facemask grab..
    I have seen runners giving a straight arm to a tackler that were more guilty of a facemask than that..The packers were aided by the refs, but took advantage of the bad call and won the game because Detroit had poor coverage

  36. Every season, the players get faster
    Every season the players get bigger
    Every season the players get stronger
    Every season football gets better
    Every season the game gets more exciting
    Every season the reffing gets worse

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