Josh Rosen was rolling toward the sideline, hoping to find an open receiver on a third-down play in the third quarter when suddenly something hit his right hand.
He initially thought it was a Chargers defender trying to swipe at the ball.
The Cardinals rookie quarterback then realized it was a penalty flag.
Rosen said he “freaked out” and threw the ball away.
“You can’t do that, though, in the middle of a play. Whatever,” Rosen said, via Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.
The most infamous flag toss by an official came in 1999 when Jeff Triplette accidentally hit Orlando “Zeus” Brown in the right eye with his flag. Brown pushed Triplette, drawing a suspension, but he spent six days in the hospital with bleeding behind his eye and ended up missing the next three seasons with his injury.
He sued the NFL and settled the lawsuit for $25 million.