The Bills thought they had a touchdown with two seconds to go in the first half of Sunday’s loss to the Patriots when Tyrod Taylor found Kelvin Benjamin in the back of the end zone, but a long replay review led to the call being changed to an incompletion.
NFL senior vice president of officiating Alberto Riveron said that the call was overturned because Benjamin didn’t have control of the ball with both feet in bounds, something that the Bills and many outside of Buffalo believed was the latest case of Riveron re-officiating the call rather than using the “clear and obvious” standard to decide whether to overturn what was called on the field.
Bills owner Terry Pegula said on WGR 550 on Tuesday that he’s heard from some of those people and agrees that the call “just wasn’t consistent with what replay” was before Riveron took over this year. Pegula said he feels as a football fan, rather than the owner of the Bills, that the league has to “fix it” because “we can’t have stuff like this happening in our league.”
“Replay was developed by this league to correct obvious mistakes,” Pegula said, via Mike Rodak of ESPN.com. “And if you got to look at at play 30 times from five different angles, and keep looking at it, and looking at it and looking at it, you go with the call on the field. That’s what the league has been doing ever since replay started. As a matter of fact, Dean Blandino, who was the head of replay last year, said last year that was a touchdown.”
The league can consider changes to replay and other rules this offseason and enact them if enough other owners agree with Pegula’s view that the system isn’t working as designed.