Posted September 25, 2012

NFL: Seahawks-Packers referees made right call on catch, missed interference

NFL
Seahawks-Packers call

The referees called Golden Tate’s last-minute reception legitimate despite conflicting calls from the two officials and video evidence to the contrary. (Otto Gruele Jr, Getty Images)

The NFL has issued a statement responding to the uproar over the last play of yesterday night’s game between the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers. In it, the league supports the decision by referees to award a catch to Seahawks wide receiver Golden Tate, claiming it to be a “simultaneous catch,” in which the benefit of the doubt goes to the offensive player.

However, the league admits that end zone officials missed an offensive pass interference call on Tate, who pushed Packers cornerback Sam Shields to the ground before leaping to catch the Hail Mary pass to the end zone that won the game for the Seahawks in the closing moments of last night’s contest.

The play has generated yet another firestorm of controversy throughout the league, with several players, analysts, and fans venting their frustration on social media and in person. It is also the latest in a series of gaffes by the replacement officials called in by the NFL to officiate games while the labor dispute with the league’s normal referees is ongoing.

Despite the protests from all corners, the league dispelled any notion that the game result could be overturned, saying in the statement that “The result of the game is final.”

The full statement from the NFL is as follows:

In Monday’s game between the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks, Seattle faced a 4th-and-10 from the Green Bay 24 with eight seconds remaining in the game.

Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson threw a pass into the end zone. Several players, including Seattle wide receiver Golden Tate and Green Bay safety M.D. Jennings, jumped into the air in an attempt to catch the ball.

While the ball is in the air, Tate can be seen shoving Green Bay cornerback Sam Shields to the ground. This should have been a penalty for offensive pass interference, which would have ended the game. It was not called and is not reviewable in instant replay.

When the players hit the ground in the end zone, the officials determined that both Tate and Jennings had possession of the ball. Under the rule for simultaneous catch, the ball belongs to Tate, the offensive player. The result of the play was a touchdown.

Replay Official Howard Slavin stopped the game for an instant replay review. The aspects of the play that were reviewable included if the ball hit the ground and who had possession of the ball. In the end zone, a ruling of a simultaneous catch is reviewable. That is not the case in the field of play, only in the end zone.

Referee Wayne Elliott determined that no indisputable visual evidence existed to overturn the call on the field, and as a result, the on-field ruling of touchdown stood. The NFL Officiating Department reviewed the video today and supports the decision not to overturn the on-field ruling following the instant replay review.

The result of the game is final.


21 comments
Jimatmad
Jimatmad

Just because I can drive a car doesn't mean you should give me a NASCAR ride.

 

That's what these guys are like. They're trying, but the game is moving 100 miles an hour faster than they're used to and they can't adapt in a couple weeks.

Jimatmad
Jimatmad

They didn't even address the blown simultaneous possession call  They're trying to paint this as a simple missed pass interference call.

 

That wasn't even the worst officiating mistake on the play.

 

Jennings was above Tate with both hands on the ball before Tate even got one hand on it. By rule, unless the ball actually leaves Jennings' possession before the whistle ends the play, it's his ball, and that didn't happen. Jennings came down with the ball clutched to his chest, and all Tate could do was snake an arm in while laying underneath Jennings. That was an interception.

DonHole
DonHole

"It depends on what the definition of "possession" is..."

- Bill Clinton

BillFerguson
BillFerguson

Frankly, if your local high school game had the same calls as the refs made in that game for both sides, it would have been a poorly officiated game much less at the professional level.

Mitch1
Mitch1

if the ref's would have any sense they should have noticed the interference during the review, even knowing that wasn't a reviewable offense, and reversed the call simply becasue that was the RIGHT thing to do.  no one would argue the reversal since it certainly appeared an interception to begin with

Jordan
Jordan

Not only was the call wrong, there was nothing said about the pass interference in the end-zone either....like everyone has already said, if they want to lie to themselves thats fine, but don't lie to the fans who idolize the sport of American Football and don't lie to the players whose paychecks and contracts are at stake. Don't play with their well-being. 

HughM
HughM

It is interesting that the call was disputed on the field by the two "officials" that were there but not after reviewing it?  Bye Bye NFL til the real refs return.  I will not even turn on the NFL network until after the return of the real refs.

Chris8
Chris8

Ok this is what really makes me mad, cause now the NFL is insulting peoples intelligence.  If they want to lie to themselves then fine, but stop lying to everyone else.

jweller3
jweller3

I can honestly say that I have never seen pass interference called in the end zone on a Hail Mary.  Frankly, if the Green Bay db had batted the ball away like he should have, the Packers win.  Refs should have conferred before going in opposite calls.  Looked like the replay should have overturned it.

BillFerguson
BillFerguson

If that is the right call then football is doomed. Golden Tate either had some really special gloves or one hand on the ball when the other player has two on the ball and is controlling the ball is simultaneous possession. Also in the replay, notice that Tate has his arms around the back of the Green Bay player. It's pretty hard to have possession of the ball with your arms around the other player. I'm not a fan of either team but that was a crock. If the NFL feels they  have to support that sham, that is ridiculous and woe for the league. Let's see the regular refs call that simultaneous possession the next time an O lineman runs into the pile and grabs onto a ball already in the possession of the defense.

rpatvaughn65
rpatvaughn65

What do you expect from replacement officials? It's like teams' starting the taxi squad and expecting the same results. The NFL is making the case for the striking refs.

JohnB1
JohnB1

To say that it was a simultaneous catch is now the third time the NFL has gotten this wrong. It was called wrong on the field, the wrong call was upheld on review and now the morons in the NFL front office think we are all dumb enough to swallow this stupid excuse for an obvious meltdown.

 

The only just thing to do is reverse the call and give GB the win they earned.

Michael49
Michael49

What are you people talking about?  It was a clean catch by Tate.  Touchdown!!!   Game over!!!  @MichaelADorman 

usapatriot1026
usapatriot1026

Wow, what a chicken-manure statement by the NFL front office, which is not surprising in the least.  For them to state that it was a simulataneous catch when it absolutely was not proves that they are gutless liars with no integrity or respect for the fans.

lvicsmith
lvicsmith

Of course the NFL supported the "referee's" call on the field.  How could they admit that the replacement ref blew it, that the game should have been over, and that a bad call, by a non-qualified ref, caused one team to lose a game they should have won, THEN, go back to the barginning table with the refs/union, and hold their position in negotiations?  Would anyone expect any other type of statement?

Ken7
Ken7

Don't  forget the pass inteference on the ball down the sidelines where the receiver had his hands around the DB and the DB was called for the infraction

HughM
HughM

they could have called face mask foul on Rice too.