I just watched the last play of the Tampa Bay-New
Orleans game. With the score 34-28 in New Orleans' favor, Tampa Bay
threw a touchdown pass with no time remaining on the clock that was
ruled incomplete because the Saints' defensive
back had pushed Tampa's receiver out of bounds
before the completion, and
the referee ruled that the receiver
cannot be the first person to touch the ball after he has been out
of bounds, so it was an illegal touching.
is clear that the defensive back pushed the intended receiver
out of bounds, why is that
not pass interference? The
rule is clear that a
defensive player cannot initiate contact with an intended receiver
more than five yards past
the line of scrimmage. So if the defensive back
pushes intended receiver out
of bounds more than five yards past the line of scrimmage, that
would be an illegal contact
and would be pass interference which would place the ball
on the one-yard line and give Tampa Bay one more play. But
there was no flag and the game ended in a New Orleans victory.
As bad as no referee calling a penalty,
neither of the TV sportscasters brought up the issue.
As I said last week, bring back the
replacement refs and hire some commentators who know something about
the game and its rules.
October 21, 2012