Al Riveron on New Orleans DPI call: Replay showed “clear and obvious” evidence

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The first 11 weeks of the NFL season taught a pretty clear lesson for coaches using challenge flags to try for pass interference penalties that weren’t called on the field.

The lesson was that the league wasn’t going to drop many flags after the fact, but Panthers head coach Ron Rivera still took a chance in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game in New Orleans. He believed the Saints interfered with wide receiver Jarius Wright as he made his way across the field.

Rivera surprisingly won the challenge, which led to an angry reaction from Saints head coach Sean Payton, Saints players and fans at the Superdome. Payton, who is on the NFL’s Competition Committee and shared thoughts about the rule on PFT Live this week, said after the game that it was not “New York’s best game.”

That referenced NFL officiating head Al Riveron, who spoke to pool reporter Larry Holder of about the call after the game.

“The ruling on the field initially was an incomplete pass. Carolina challenges the ruling on the field. They were looking for defensive pass interference. After reviewing it, it was clear and obvious through visual evidence that the defender significantly hinders the receiver while the ball is in the air, therefore, it’s defensive pass interference.”

By ruling that there was pass interference, one could have inferred that the review determined there was clear and obvious evidence of pass interference. What’s less clear is why this play reached that criteria while many other similar instances have been left as called on the field.

42 responses to “Al Riveron on New Orleans DPI call: Replay showed “clear and obvious” evidence

  1. Most people have no issue with the call, the issue here is the inconsistencies and the clear bias. Every week, at least one team gets screwed up by incompetent refs.

  2. How, with a straight face, can he reverse the incomplete pass call on the field when so, so many, far more egregious calls have been allowed to stand as called? As someone said above, the inconsistent application of the process needs to be investigated.

  3. I mean, I’d rather they get at least one right rather than just stubbornly refusing to overturn anything. That was absolutely interference and they were right to change it.

    That being said, the officiating this season has been absolutely atrocious. I think it might be worse than the replacement ref year. I don’t know why that is, but it’s apparent that the refs have no idea what they’re doing out there. Hopefully the league takes a hard look at fixing this issue in the offseason. So many games are being bungled and the wrong calls are costing a lot of teams.

  4. Yea that may be the case Al, but that has NOT been the case all season so far and now all of the sudden this game and once in the Miami game it gets called. In the Miami game it was actually buzzed down from upstairs in the final 2 mins of the half to stop play and call a DPI when nothing was called on the field. That was the 1st time that has happened all season also. Maybe the refs are deciding to change the narrative. If the playoffs get called this way it just tells you that its a joke and the networks need the extra time slots for a few more commercials fod additional revenue. You will never convince me otherwise. This is terrible for the game of football.

  5. So what about the offense pass interference call on Cook earlier in the game that was called Al? It was pretty clear that the defender initiated contact and then grabbed his arm. Payton challenges but it was upheld. Officiating was a total joke in the game.

  6. Who Cried Nation created this then cried again when it was invoked.

    I don’t have an issue that they have replay of PI. What is ridiculous is that the replay has to overturn what was called on the field. The whole idea is that the refs make mistakes. This rule enforces the mistake. It should be that the replay decides PI or not, no matter what.


  8. What is clear and obvious is that the NFL and Al Riveron want to give the Saints the middle finger every chance they can. That PI call would not have been made in any other stadium against any other team and that’s a fact. I have seen much more clear and obvious non calls challenged that were not changed but this one is? Are you kidding me. What a joke this is. The NFL bias against the Saints is what is clear and obvious.

  9. except uh..there were several other calls in this very game that apparently didnt meet the threshold that were much more clear and obvious, let alone a combination of the rest of the teams and season to this point….Not to mention the disparirty in penalties. The NFL got Dallas with that “tripping” call. Saints were just lucky that the Panthers missed the FG. If this game doesnt show you something fishy is going on, i just dont know what to tell you. Watch a couple Saints games. Its not like it doesnt happen to your teams either.

  10. The Refs have tuning up with the bad calls against the Saints during the regular season. During the playoffs, the whole country can see it and it will be worse. This is WAY MORE than just a middle finger at the Saints.

  11. The fact that they can say this was clear and obvious while also saying that the call on Cook for offensive PI when the defender fell on his own was upheld is silly.

    The fact of the matter is – the NFL doesn’t want to make their refs look like they don’t know what they’re doing and aren’t going to overturn any calls of PI unless it’s something missed like the Saints playoff game last year.

    You know it’s a problem when every announcer makes a comment like “good luck” with this PI reversal challenge.

  12. Pass Interference challenges will be done after this season…it obvious that the NFL wants to go back to the way it was…more of the same crappy calls & your garden variety no calls…since the refs only get 10% of the calls right to begin with….

  13. So obvious the league has it out for the Saints. I count at least 7 touchdowns called back this year on penalties that weren’t really penalties. It’s gotten to the point where if the Saints get a decent play there’s a more than 50% chance there will be a flag on the field. They’re playing against the opposition and playing against the referees and they’re still 9-2. Suck it NFL

  14. I find it super hilarious that the poorly thought out PI review rule bit the Saints in the backside.

    Can we get rid of the rule now?

  15. If it was any other team, it would not have been turned over. NFL has its sweetheart teams club and the Saints are one of many teams not in that club.

  16. Al Riveron is an embarrassment to football. What he does is so inconsistent and subjective that it is a bad joke. He needs to go.

    If that non-call was going to be overturned on the challenge, then there have been several dozen other challenges this season with exactly the same situation that should have been overturned as well. But they weren’t because Riveron is incompetent.

  17. What a total tool. How in the hell is he and Goodell in charge of anything? They would have been fired from my kids pee wee football league for the incompetence they have shown, and yet here we are….

  18. Sure wish the Panthers didn’t choke the opportunity away.
    Payton and Who Dat nation would have needed to be put in straight jackets if they lost.

    It was the correct call. And I love that Payton is mad about his own rule.
    But there is no rhyme or reason as to when it gets overturned.

  19. Ryan Dubose says:
    November 24, 2019 at 7:35 pm
    It was pi glad reversing it was correct
    Agreed. So what makes this one different than ALL the other calls ignored to this point of the season. NFL officiating is brutal. Never been this bad in my 40 years of watching.

  20. I said it last week after the Hopkins no-call. I’m no longer questioning Riveron’s skill at his job, I’m questioning his integrity. This reversal was the right call, but not in line with what has happened all season. It’s all a little fishy to me.

  21. Nothing like a ruling out of the norm to get the conspiracy nuts frothing at the mouth. “The league hates the Saints”. “The referees hate instant replay”. And, perhaps the best, “Legalized gambling is influencing calls/reviews”.

    The no call at the end of the Saints game was properly changed upon review. You would think that the complainers about the lack of changes would celebrate a correct overturn. Instead, they would rather prattle on about tinfoil hat conspiracy theories. This proves that those people really do not care getting the calls correct. Instead, they care much more about simply complaining about something.

  22. After watching the NFL for decades, as of this year I have no idea what constitutes pass interference. There are so many obvious cases of pass interference that are not called, even on a challenge, that I’m not sure anyone can give a decent definition of what is pass interference.

  23. Football officials, umpires and referee’s are supposed to administrate the game they are working. They are not to make headlines or ‘become’ the game or ‘become’ the story. This is clearly not the case in today’s NFL. Today’s officials have become the uncontrollable little kid in the family who ruins Thanksgiving Dinner. This is another reason fans are leaving the stadium. We want to see football, not drama brought on by opaque, indiscernible rules and zebras who were not doing their job of officiating. For Pete’s sake man. Think about it. They have slowly crept into the broadcast booth and they help announce football games. Go back to where you belong!

  24. It only appears random to those outside Riveron’s inner circle. For those that see his bets THEN it becomes perfectly clear.

  25. “Riveron clearly always bets on the Patriots too. 2 BS tripping calls.”

    The first one was a borderline call, the 2nd was a clear penalty the guy kneed the Pats player in the thigh as he and the other Olineman were pushing him down.

    And your crying would have more validity if you were also questioning the bad PI call on Jonathan Jones of the Pats early in the game. Either you want all the calls right including the bad calls against the Pats, or you just have a double standard where any bad call against the Pats is fine, but ones against the other team are a national crisis

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