Falcons Lose To Buc's On A Call That Shows Why The NFL Should Be The NFFL
Leaving the outcome of a game in the hands of the referees is never a good idea.
A team needs to play well enough to absorb a bad call or two by the officials and still win the game. If not, you run the risk of losing the way the Falcons did to the Buccaneers in week-5.
The Buc's took a 21-0 lead with 6-minutes left in the 3rd-quarter and it appeared the Falcons were over-matched and on their way to a listless loss in Tampa Bay.
But the Falcons offense finally woke-up and made a late run and an attempt to get into the win column at the end.
They cut the lead to 21-7 with 13:39 left in the game. The defense then forced two consecutive 3-and-outs and the Falcons had the ball back with 9:49 left, down 14-points.
The Falcons then put together a 12-play 70-yard drive ending with a Marcus Mariota touchdown pass and 2-point conversion, cutting the lead to 21-15.
The Buc's got the ball back at their own 25-yard line with 4:38 left after the ensuing kickoff. They then picked-up two first downs; one from a defensive holding call on a 3rd-and-4.
It was now 1st and 10 at the Buc's 48-yard line with 3:15 to play.
Leonard Fournette took the 1st-down carry up the middle for 5-yards.
Tom Brady then threw his 10th straight incomplete pass setting-up a 3rd and 5 from the Falcons 47-yard line with 3:03 left in the game.
With a 3rd-down stop here the Falcons would get the ball back and a chance at a game winning touchdown and extra point and a 22-21 win.
That's when the officials pulled the rug out from under the Falcons comeback.
Brady dropped-back to throw and was flushed-out of the pocket by DT Grady Jarrett, who caught-up to Brady for the big 3rd-down sack, giving the Falcons a chance at the win. Not so fast.
Jarrett was called for roughing the passer. 15-yard penalty, automatic 1st-down and only 2:56 left in the game with the ball on the Falcons 32-yard line.
It was most likely the worst roughing the passer call you've ever seen, and it happened at a crucial time in the game and made it look like one of the officials had money on the game.
You can check it out via this Twitter link.
Brady then completed a 3rd-down pass and then took a knee on the next three plays, running the clock out and handing the Buc's a 21-15 win.
Perhaps the Buc's would have punted without that roughing call and the Falcons may not have been able to drive the field for that game winning TD and extra point, but when a referee makes a blatant horrific bad call that instantly decides the outcome of a game it makes one wonder if everybody is playing with the same deck of cards.
Part of me hopes this ref had money on the game, because if this type of sack falls under the "roughing the passer" category then this league is going in a direction that I don't want to follow. Just change it to the National Flag Football League so I don't have to watch and expect players to be able to get tackled without a penalty on the defense.
“What I had was the defender grabbed the quarterback while he was still in the pocket,” referee Jerome Boger said after the game, “and unnecessarily throwing him to the ground. That is what I was making my decision based upon.”
1) Jerome Bogus either sucks at his job, 2) the league wants him to make those grossly negligent calls, or 3) he had money on the Buccaneers.
Hopefully he doesn't get the opportunity to ref a playoff game.