A bad call went the Ravens’ way on their first drive today.
With Baltimore going for it on fourth down, Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson attempted an option run to the outside. As he pitched, Jackson was pulled down to the ground, his pitch went awry, and the Vikings recovered the fumble.
But the officials flagged Vikings defensive end DJ Wonnum for a horse collar tackle. It was a strange call, as Wonnum grabbed Jackson by the back of the jersey near the number, and the rules say a player has to grab the name plate or above for it to be a penalty. Former NFL head of officiating Dean Blandino said on the FOX broadcast that the call was wrong.
“The rule is specific, it’s name plate or above. That’s below,” Blandino said as a replay showed Wonnum grabbing Jackson’s jersey below the name plate.
A drive that should have ended with a Ravens fumble instead ended up with Ravens kicker Justin Tucker making a field goal, and the Ravens took a 3-0 lead.