With replay angles inconclusive, key ruling in Washington game remained a fumble


Alberto Riveron’s first Sunday on the job has been largely without incident. But there was a fairly significant incident near the end of the Eagles-Washington game that helped sealed the win for the road team.

A hit on Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins resulted in the ball coming out, with a recovery by Eagles defensive lineman Fletcher Cox leading to a touchdown. One replay angle seemed to suggest it was a forward pass, not a fumble. Another angle showed the hand coming forward empty, with the ball next to it.

Referee Brad Allen told pool reporter Master Tesfastion of the Washington Post after the game that replay review was inconclusive, resulting in the play being upheld (or, more accurately, not overturned). Allen, who made the real-time fumble ruling (Riveron made the decision to uphold it), said, “I just have to go with my gut. And my gut said fumble.”

The league has evolved away from the “indisputable visual evidence” phrase, replacing it with a requirement that the evidence be “clear and obvious.” Here, it was neither clear nor obvious that the ruling was erroneous.

Though social media erupted in response to the decision to let the call stand, there was little grumbling or rumbling from Washington coach Jay Gruden and other members of the team.

22 responses to “With replay angles inconclusive, key ruling in Washington game remained a fumble

  1. Certainly a key point in the game but the skins had already lost game with poor play by the oofense all day and a defense that still can not get off the field on 3rd down.

    It looks to be another long season for us long suffering Redskins fans.

  2. The fact anyone who saw the replay still thinks it was a fumble is mind boggling. Ball came out of his hand as a tight spiral.

  3. As an Eagles fan, that was most definitely a forward pass and should have been over turned.

    That being said the refs missed many Redskin fouls and the numbers were a bit one sided so I’m going to chalk this up to karma.

  4. After the opening kickoff you knew these refs were not making the right calls. The guy that made the tackle jumps up and pulls off his helmet and runs around. Isn’t that a penalty? The ref crew was bad all day for both sides. Can’t the NFL do better with all the money it makes?

  5. It doesn’t matter, Kirk handed the eagles enough points before that moment. Not taking anything away from the eagles front seven, props to them, but there were plenty of occasions when Cousins heard steps that weren’t there. Not to mention him staring down one side of the field. $24 mil.

  6. ‘upper23 says:
    September 10, 2017 at 5:59 pm
    Now that’s funny. Makes you wonder about cognitive abilities if they didn’t find that conclusive’


    I agree, they missed a tonne of holding penalties on the redskins o-line too, plain sight how do they miss these?

  7. It looked like a forward pass but it was close. What wasn’t close was the blatant illegal hands to the face by the skins on that Kerrigan interception TD. While it would have been a weak call, by the definition of the rule it was clearly a penalty and it wasn’t called resulting in a skins TD. This was just payback by the football gods…

  8. Pretty close call. I wouldn’t have felt robbed if it went the other way. The skins weren’t going anywhere anyway.

    Washington has a lot of talent but something about that team smells like loser. Hope I am wrong, I like it when the nfc east is strong top to bottom.

  9. Get over it Skins.

    Back side angle looked like an incomplete pass.

    Front side angle looked like the empty hand moving forward.

    Whatever it was called on the field was going to stand.

  10. Eagles fan, yea I saw it as a forward pass….However the refs gave them a TD missing an obvious roughing the passer call and later missed a blatant intentional grounding.

  11. Since when did the replay rule get translated into “all camera angles must be clear and obvious”? Isn’t that why they look at multiple angles to begin with? To find that one angle that gives them the “clear and obvious” look? I don’t know how it could be any more obvious it was a forward pass when looking at the angle from behind the quarterback.

  12. It’s was an obvious forward pass but the loss came to missed opportunities early; red zone INT, Pryor key drops and the defense not being in synch. Redskins need to clean these problems up and then blind refs won’t be an issue. I liked what I saw from the Redskins and look forward to their improvements through the season……HTTR

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