Doug Pederson on penalty disparity: I think league is aware of it

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The Eagles beat the Panthers on Thursday night despite a major imbalance in the number of penalties called on the two teams.

Philly was flagged 10 times for 126 yards while the Panthers were penalized once for one yard, which was unusual enough that Eagles coach Doug Pederson was asked about whether the team would be looking for an explanation from the league this week. Pederson said they would go through the usual practice of asking for clarification on particular calls and he was then asked about a longer-lasting disparity in the way penalty flags are thrown when the Eagles play in games officiated by referee Pete Morelli’s crew.

As several people pointed out on social media in the wake of Thursday’s game, the Eagles have been penalized 40 times in the last four games featuring Morelli’s crew. Their opponents have been penalized eight times over that span.

“Well, I think the league is aware of it,” Pederson said in comments distributed by the team. “I’m not going to get into all of that. It’s just we have to do a better job. We have to coach it and not be — we can’t be getting these flags if they are flags. And then listen, a lot of them were legit. I am not saying they weren’t. A lot of the flags last night were legit calls. So, we’ve got to do a better job there. But, for whatever reason, it is what it is. But moving forward, we can’t worry about it. Bottom line is, we won the game. We figured out how to do that, and that’s the bottom line.”

A 5:1 ratio in penalties in one game might not look that out of whack, but it’s certainly curious to see such a gap over an extended period of time. While Pederson’s right to keep the focus on what his team can do better, it’s worth a look to see what’s gone on to create such a big disparity and whether anything can be done differently to avoid one in the future.

16 responses to “Doug Pederson on penalty disparity: I think league is aware of it

  1. if betting is involved…then desired outcomes are in play…

    …and no I’m not talking about who wins the game…but spreads and over/unders are absolutely influenced…

    It’s absolutely naive to believe otherwise…

  2. The Seahawks were similarly hosed last year against the Saints where the penalty count was 11-2. However the biggest middle finger from the refs in that game were the 2 blatant pick plays that the Saints ran for TD’s that weren’t called. So sick of the officiating in the NFL.

  3. There are 2 types of errors that officials might make: throwing a flag when there was no violation (aka False Alarm), and not throwing a flag when there is a violation (aka Miss). It is possible, if unlikely, that the Eagles actually committed many more violations. But the key piece of evidence for the league when evaluating officials is to consider the ratio of the types of errors for both teams. If the officials are not applying the same standards to both teams, then the ratio of type-1 to type-2 errors will be different.

  4. It’s flat out pathetic when you watch a game where the officiating crew is only watching one team. It’s obvious when happening to everyone but the league office and the idiot refs doing it for all to se.

  5. The pass interference call against them when the safety intercepted it was horrible. And the roughing the passer when cam flopped was also bad. Both of those penalties led to Carolina tds.

  6. Not too familiar with the Eagles penalties, but are most of them on the defensive side? Anyways, my 2 cents: Being a Lions fan I vividly recall the defensive penalties that we racked up under Jim Schwartz. I loved the guy for his toughness and aggressiveness, but it really is a double-edged sword. They play hard, but they also get flagged hard. And honestly, I’d rather that be the case than “playing it safe”

  7. If it weren’t for the officiating, the Eagles could have been up 2-3 TDs most of the game. Not complaining, only pointing out… I’m sure the league wants a competitive game for a home team with big-time Cam.

    I wasn’t shocked when Blount got an unnecessary roughing call then 3 drives later he was thrown to the ground after the play was over and the ref just stood there

  8. Newton had over 50 dropbacks and there was not a single holding penalty flag despite easily seeing several obvious ones that they chose not to call. Certainly fishy.

  9. Jeffery and Ertz were literally mugged on every route they ran. No PI on Carolina. Benjamin has a hand on him with a typical Camera pass nowhere near him, Pass Interference called. Add to that non-calls on the guys holding Cox pretty much every play and you get this sort of lopsided nightmare. But, as is often the case, the better team won, despite the refs.

  10. I’m a NY Giants fan. I do, however, love the game for the game itself. I don’t need the Giants to be on, to totally get into a game….so

    Last night’s game was a joke. For the first EVER (outside of one of those Dallas vs Philly/Washington/St Louis games where the Giants needed Dallas to lose) I was rooting for the Eagles because it just seemed unfair. Besides, any old school Giants fan dislikes the Cowboys more than any other team in the East. I do miss Reid’s clock management issues. Eli has a similar problem in the zillion delay of game penalties.

    I actually hope the Eagles win the East. Got a decent owner, a loyal and local fan base, and I was positive Wentz was the real deal. I also thought Prescott was the real deal and Jerry got lucky because he bungled trading up and Prescott got a DUI.

    So good luck Eagle fans. You guys are getting a raw deal from those refs. They just totally outplayed the Panthers and yet the Panthers still had a shot.

    PS: The special teams downing the ball with 2:03 is something that would have made me nuts. In the Eagle/Giants game, Vereen went out of bounds with 38 secs or something and I almost lost my mind. Led to the 61 yd FG. They can memorize these complex plays but situational football escapes so many.

  11. PS: The special teams downing the ball with 2:03 is something that would have made me nuts. In the Eagle/Giants game, Vereen went out of bounds with 38 secs or something and I almost lost my mind. Led to the 61 yd FG. They can memorize these complex plays but situational football escapes so many.

    First time I’ve seen someone comment on that but THANK YOU. You can see Burton the backup tight end yelling at the guy who touched it. And Romo’s explanation was great “guys just get excited that they were the one who downed the ball, as if who does it even matters” lol.

  12. You’re welcome (you’re caps mean you too were not a happy camper).

    I usually read but don’t troll or comment too often on other NFC East teams articles. But here I sit, being NICE to Philly fans. I changed the Beagle to Eagle before I hit the Post Comment and I didn’t consciously know why.

    Then it hit me.

    I’m sick and tired of the division and hate in this country. I don’t want to dislike anyone I share the flag with. Not anymore (even Cowboy fans…there, I said it). My father would be proud. He liked everyone.

  13. That’s every single game for the Raiders! The refs are always calling penalties on the Raiders, and not the other team- 8 of 10 they don’t even show the penalty called? Corrupt Officials

  14. Pete Morellis crew has it out for the eagles when reffing birds games! If the league doesn’t recognize it, they aren’t looking AT ALL! Lions games last seas, same thing, 5:1 or larger ratio!
    “Integrity” right Roger!?!? You CLOWN!

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