Dez Bryant offers to help Roger Goodell define what a catch is

AP

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said he wants to form a committee of football experts to help him codify what is a catch and what is not.

And he has at least one rather enthusiastic volunteer.

“That’s cool!” Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant told Jarrett Bell of USA Today. “They need to invite me. Tell them they need to call me, so I can have my input.”

It’s not a coincidence that Bryant has input to share now, as the Cowboys prepare to play the Packers. After all, his was-it-or-wasn’t-it grab in the playoffs is one of the primary examples of the confusion that reigns when confusing rules are applied by officials who are probably doing their best but are simply overwhelmed.

Bryant’s apparent catch was reversed on replay, the kind of interpretive call which has been inviting scrutiny for months since.

“That’s football,” Bryant said. “But I’ll tell you this: I dwelled on that [expletive] for about a good two months. It was hard for me to watch [the rest of] the playoffs, just because, . . .”

Goodell said last week during an NFL owners meeting that he formed a committee including current and former General Managers and former players, to study the catch rule. Their suggestions will be forwarded to the competition committee.

And Bryant doubtless has some definite ideas on how they could fix the current mess.

66 responses to “Dez Bryant offers to help Roger Goodell define what a catch is

  1. “Catch” shouldn’t even be in the rule book. It is literally the second thing you learn with a ball after “throw” why this is so complicated is beyond me..

  2. You know it when you see it. Overthinking kills athletics. Plus, why are we encouraging a needless hit in the end zone? Two feet/catch, done.

  3. Ain’t no whine finer than a cryboys. They think they are the only ones in the history of the game to have a questionable call go against them. Oh the injustice!

  4. The major flaw is that being a falling receiver overrides becoming a runner. If a receiver is falling but stretches the ball out, to me, he’s demonstrating possession with a football move after the catch. However, under the current rules, the entire fall is treated as one process, and if the receiver loses the ball at the end of his fall, it doesn’t matter what happened previously. The league can fix that by simply acknowledging football moves after the catch for falling receivers, and let that render any fumble caused by the ground irrelevant because the receiver is a ball carrier at that point.

    The refs got the Dez play right by the book, and the would’ve been same even with this fix because he didn’t make any sort of football move. Getting two feet down and falling should not be considered enough. The catch and fall are in one motion and he does nothing to establish himself as a runner (such as reaching the ball out or tucking it away). He just instantly fell. Simply, it would have been a completion if it didn’t hit the ground during his fall.

  5. ….honestly, that’s the 1st smart thing Goodell has proposed. Having a panel of players that currently or HAVE played the position is great idea. Calvin Johnson should definitely be on it.

  6. Oh boy he is setting up another committee again, this for a cool $10m, where is Wells to offer his legal interpretation of what a catch is.

  7. Just maybe Dez Bryant knows a little more about catching the ball and has a bit more experience doing it, than Dean Blandino.
    Blind Dino will have his book definition, but he should be open to listening to the guys who actually do it for a living.

  8. I would bet Megatron wants in on this too. It would make sense to bring in active WR’s on the discussion, so I doubt the league does it…

  9. Dez, maybe take some comprehension lessons, ” the ball must remain in control and possession thru the continuance of the play, including when downed”. let it go dez you lost control of the ball. Pass incomplete its as simple as that.

  10. No one wants input from a bad attitude player and a selfish commissioner to make the game worser then it already is. These officials are just terrible with calls. Get rid of them also, please.

  11. First we should clarify some things:

    – It was a catch, only haters and packers fans think otherwise

    -For those griping about the Detroit game, don’t forget that Suh had his 1 game suspension for stomping on Rodgers overturned which was total horse-pucky.

    -GODell is way beyond help of any kind and how he is still the commish is mind boggling.

    -its time for Blandino to go to0, His flip-flopping every week as he tries to bend rule interpretations so they agree to what he thinks is mind numbing.

  12. …nobody, including Mike Pereira who stated the following on TV, knows what a catch is anymore…funny, didn’t have this problem until the late 90’s…isn’t progress great?

  13. Great! Bring in Dez, he’ll tell you.

    I say ball in hands, two feet down = catch……

    All this “going to the ground” and “take two steps” is all B.S. What this does is make the definition equivocal and gives the NFL and refs leeway to cheat.

  14. No one wants input from a bad attitude player and a selfish commissioner to make the game worser then it already is. Please get rid of the officials as well. They are just terrible with calls.

  15. The Dez play was called correctly by rule, but it’s a terrible rule. This has to be the worst rule in a book full of bad rules.

    I just don’t what they’ll replace it with. There has to be some criteria that must be met, unless we want everything that a receiver touches to count as a catch.

    No matter what they do, there will always be at least one or two every season that gets ruled “no catch” that will anger one fan base or another.

    The Dez play should have been a catch. So should Calvin Johnson’s on more than one occasion. I’m glad I’m not tasked with figuring out this convoluted mess.

  16. If I come down with the ball it’s a catch, if I fumble I never had possession, and if I don’t catch it, it was interference.

  17. As a Packers fan I wish they would have counted that catch so we wouldn’t have to listen to all this whining! There was plenty of time left in the game and the Cowboys defense couldn’t stop the Packers offense they would have went down and scored to win the game and no more whining by Cowboys and vikings fans!

  18. If it involved Dez, then he’ll tell you it’s a catch. No thanks, can’t trust his judgement.

  19. RealDeal15 says:
    Dec 9, 2015 8:36 AM
    First we should clarify some things:

    – It was a catch, only haters and packers fans think otherwise
    *********************************
    Not a hater or a packer fan. I knew the second I saw the original play (even before it went to replay) that it was not a catch.

    Dez needs to learn what a catch is before he can hope to help make changes in the rules.

  20. That play Dez made in Green Bay was absolutely a catch. No sure why it wasn’t called “a catch” but it sure hurt this die hard Cowboys fan. I think most of us were shocked more than Dez his self.

    Signed,

    A sad Cowboys fan…hoping for a better year in 2016

  21. Goodell doesn’t need his help. It was not a catch. It wasn’t when this scenario has played out with other teams, and it never has been a catch. He bobbled it.

  22. Please people. Watch it again. He came down, the ball hit the turf, and he lost control. HE BOBBLED THE BALL! When has that EVER been a catch?

    NEVER!

  23. The whole “Control as you’re going to the ground” thing is what induced all the confusion.

    It could be simplified easily (which I think has been suggested before:

    1) If it is caught, and any kind of movement occurs after – it’s a catch.

    2) If afterward, regardless of activity, going to the ground or otherwise it is dropped and possession is lost, it is a fumble.

  24. stellarperformance says:
    Dec 9, 2015 10:14 AM
    Please people. Watch it again. He came down, the ball hit the turf, and he lost control. HE BOBBLED THE BALL! When has that EVER been a catch?

    NEVER!
    ——————————————————————-

    Exactly. Unless they change the rule to make bobbling possession, that will never be a catch.

  25. Here’s how simple it should be. Did you have possession for a moment with both feet in bounds and the ball not touching the ground? Then at that very moment it’s a catch. If the ball comes out afterwards then it’s a fumble. Plain and simple. No football move Mumbo jumbo, no steps after.

  26. No change will be forthcoming any time soon. For any policy, procedure or rule to be effective, it needs to be self evident. Shouldn’t be subjective or require a committee vote. In other words, it wouldn’t require nor allow personal interpretation from Goodell. And therefore, it will never be changed.
    The thought of the NFL running smoothly and not requiring Goodell’s intervention is both inconceivable and unacceptable to Goodell. Remember, the guy is the epitome of narcissism. This is his NFL and everybody must acknowledge that. Every bit of it, from the mundane to the significant, its all his. But it’s also up to him to interpret what is mundane and what is significant.
    So nothing changes without his direct control. He insists upon that. And because, beyond a few basic PR skills that any 12 year old boy with a paper route has mastered, Goodell is incompetent, you can be certain that any solutions he proposes, won’t be solutions at all.
    Sad isn’t it.
    Fire Goodell and start bringing back integrity to the NFL.

  27. They are stuck on the wording and the literal application of what it says. They need to simplify the wording and stipulate the intent for why it was worded that way. The referees can then have a solid foundation on which to base the inevitable judgment calls. If the intent says that the wording for going to the ground was to address a receiver diving to catch a ball and then losing it upon contact with the ground these calls are easier to make. If it is ruled a catch in that situation then the loss of the ball is a fumble. Ruling it incomplete prevents a rash of turnovers. That is why they chose to rule it incomplete when they made the rule. Now, they have forgotten (or ignored) the intent and concentrated on the literal wording. Pays where guys that take 2+ steps (like Dez) and then lose the ball on contact with the ground are ruled incomplete even though the process of the catch happened 5 yards ago. That was not the intent originally but that is what we have today. It really is not hard to fix if the league is transparent during the process.

  28. indycheezhed says:
    Dec 9, 2015 8:47 AM
    As a Packers fan I wish they would have counted that catch so we wouldn’t have to listen to all this whining! There was plenty of time left in the game and the Cowboys defense couldn’t stop the Packers offense they would have went down and scored to win the game and no more whining by Cowboys and vikings fans!

    Exactly! From what I remember, there was 3-3.5 minutes left, and the Packers moved the ball down the field easily just running out the clock! They could’ve easily scored had they wanted to.

  29. The most out of touch suggestions are the ones that starts with “its so simple, why dont they just…”. Anyone who thinks its simple doesnt get it.
    The current rules are a serious attempt to provide a framework for objective assessment of each play so that we can have some consistency.
    As with the golf swing – “perfection is unattainable”

  30. Oh it was a catch, no doubt.

    Did he step out of bounds with the ball moving–no. Was the moving ball knocked out of his hands–no. Did he take multiple steps with the ball in his hands—yes. Did he end up on his back with full control of the ball—yes.

    You can look at anything in super slow motion and identify movement. He ended up in bounds with the ball securely in his hands.

    That was a catch and the Cowboys were robbed!!!!

  31. Dez made a football move. He caught it the he leaped for the goal line. Bad call end of story.

    The other rule that is unfair is the overtime rule. Team that wins toss kicks a field goal the other team gets to match it .. But if the first team scores a touch down it’s over.

  32. They’re stuck on the definition, but the wrong one. People hear “catch” and apply their own definition, despite what the NFL says. They should just change the term, call it a “schmegel”, tell you what qualifies as a valid “schmegel” and leave it at that. People won’t have any of the problems they do with the word “catch”.

  33. tonyromo1sbl says:
    Dec 9, 2015 12:03 PM
    You can look at anything in super slow motion and identify movement. He ended up in bounds with the ball securely in his hands.
    ////////////////////////////////////////

    Securely is the key word here.

    Watch it again, and take the bucket off your head. He loses the ball and does not control it. 1000 out of 1000 occurrences it is a “no catch.”

    The rules haven’t changed. It had NEVER been a catch.

  34. There was no question that was a catch by NFL definition, the same type of “almost a catch” going all the way back. What’s surprising is the refs getting it right on the reversal. Refs have gotten worse, which doesn’t help with the confusion. That’s what Goodell should be focusing on. Fans need to wise up, don’t dumb down the game. It’s not as easy as it looks.

  35. With the rules the way they are now, if you make a catch just having 2 hands on the ball and both feet down it will be nearly impossible to play CB or Safety within 2:00. Every pass near the paint will be a catch and fumble out of bounds or a TD in the back/side of the endzone, unless the defender can bat the ball away without grazing the WR/TE’s jersey.

    If there’s going to be a committee of players to decide what a catch is, make sure it isn’t just WR’s and invite some defenders.

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