The ruling on the field will stand. The NFL has spoken after the disputed call that gave the Seattle Seahawks a 14-12 victory over the Green Bay Packers on Monday night.
Replays indicated that Packers cornerback M.D. Jennings had possession of the pass in the end zone, but referees awarded the catch to Seattle’s Golden Tate after the two wrestled for the ball on the turf.
It’s worth mentioning that while the replacement referees are being blamed for the gaffe on the field, the replay officials who reviewed the play were not replacements but rather full-time league employees.
In any case, the NFL issued the following statement on Tuesday:
“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 controversial touchdown that gave Seattle a 14-12 victory over Green Bay on Monday night resonated with a big way with gamblers.
The call at the end of the game that was ruled a reception by the Seahawks’ Golden Tate rather than a Packers interception resulted in an estimated money swing according to one sports book as much as $200 million to $250 million worldwide, ESPN.com reported.
Some estimates from online services believe the impact was even greater.
—New Jersey State Senate President Steve Sweeney has seen enough controversial officiating in the NFL and will introduce legislation to ban replacement referees from professional sports the wake of Monday night’s controversial ending to the game in Seattle.
—The reign of replacement officials, wrought with tumult and negativity, isn’t over yet but the NFL and representatives from the NFL Referees Association held face-to-face talks in a fourth straight day of negotiations on Tuesday.
According to Peter King of Sports Illustrated, a chasm remains between the locked-out officials and the NFL over pension and the number of reserve crews on watch as replacement optional replacements should any official be rated as underperforming.
—Packer quarterback Aaron Rodgers was outspoken on his weekly radio show on ESPN Milwaukee on Tuesday regarding the controversial play Monday, according to NFL.com.
“I think first of all, I’ve got to do something that the NFL is not going to do and apologize to the fans,” Rodgers said on the radio program. “The product that is on the field is not being complemented by an appropriate set of officials. The games are getting out of control. Like I said in the first week, I’m OK with the replacement refs as long as they don’t have a direct impact on the game.”
Regarding the league’s rationalization of a simultaneous catch, Rodgers said, “That’s garbage, obviously … They’re covering their butt here.”
—Seahawks coach Pete Carroll was pleased with the NFL ruling in an interview with the NFL Network.
Asked whether he thought Tate made the catch, Carroll said, according to NFL.com, “Yeah, and I think it’s cool that the league thought that, too. It’s very questionable, it’s a very questionable call to make. But it’s simultaneous when they hit the ground. Up in the air, it looked like the DB had the advantage, but when they got to the ground, it’s a matched-up catch, and it’s a very hard one to call. We were fortunate the call went our way. But you’ve got to say the league reviewed it and said they agreed with what was called on the field, they just missed the pass interference.”
— Packers guard Josh Sitton told “The Jim Rome Show” on Tuesday that the NFL isn’t concerned about players, or player safety, and feels little urgency to end the lockout.
“I don’t think they care,” he said. “They know the type of business we have and they know fans are going to keep showing up. There needs to be something done. I wish I had an answer. If I could go on strike, I fricking would just to end this crap. I don’t know if we can, we probably can’t because of the CBA, but I wish there was an answer. I don’t think they care, they flat-out don’t care.”
–The Eagles released punter Chas Henry and re-signed Mat McBriar, who was a two-time Pro Bowl selection in eight seasons with the Cowboys.
McBriar, 33, signed a two-year deal. He was in training camp with the Eagles but wasn’t fully healthy, coach Andy Reid said. Henry signed with the Eagles in 2011 as an undrafted free agent after an All-SEC senior season at Florida. He was largely inconsistent last season as a rookie. However, he was averaging nearly 49 yards per punt this season.
–Denver Broncos linebacker Joe Mays received notice of a one-game suspension for a helmet-to-helmet hit that resulted in Texans quarterback Matt Schaub losing part of his ear.
Mays immediately appealed the suspension.
Mays hit Schaub in the jaw area with the crown of his helmet. Schaub, who threw four touchdown passes in the Texans’ 31-25 victory, missed just one play in the third quarter.
—The Indianapolis Colts signed cornerback Dariuis Butler on Tuesday to bolster their depleted secondary.
To clear roster space for Butler, the Colts released offensive lineman Trai Essex, who saw action in the team’s past two games.
—If the ending of Monday night’s Seattle-Green Bay wasn’t crazy enough, there’s a report Tuesday that Seahawks rookie quarterback Russell Wilson apparently didn’t call the correct play on the winning touchdown.
Wilson was supposed to run a play that designed for him to roll right and for his receivers to run underneath routes, Yahoo Sports reported Tuesday. Instead, some of the receivers ran the correct play and others, including Golden Tate, ran the play intended to be executed.
—Chiefs cornerback Jacques Reeves was placed on injured reserve with a hamstring injury suffered in practice last week.
Reeves was signed by the Chiefs after being out of the NFL for the past two seasons. A former seventh-round pick by Dallas in 2004, he has 168 tackles and six interceptions in 90 career games.
–Offensive lineman Reggie Wells was re-signed by the Chargers after being released last week.
Cornerback Greg Gatson, who was signed off the practice squad for Sunday’s game and released again Monday, was re-signed to the practice squad. He has played in San Diego’s past two games.
–Linebacker Vic So’oto was signed by the Raiders, who waived linebacker Carl Ihenacho.
So’oto, a second cousin of the late Junior Seau, played in seven games for Green Bay last season as an undrafted rookie out of BYU. He was waived by the Packers on Aug. 31 with an injury settlement (ankle).
The Raiders also released defensive tackle Vaughn Meatoga from the practice squad.
–Cornerback David Jones was signed by the Redskins, who waived/injured Crezdon Butler.
Washington also signed defensive lineman Chigbo Anunoby to the practice squad and released defensive lineman Delvin Johnson.
Butler suffered a hamstring injury against Cincinnati on Sunday.
–Running back Jonathan Grimes was signed by the Jets off Houston’s practice squad.
An undradted rookie out of William & Mary, Grimes signed with the Texans in May but didn’t make the 53-man roster to open the season and was signed to the team’s practice squad. He rushed for 130 yards on 28 carries during the preseason.
–Wide receiver Ricardo Lockette was signed to San Francisco’s practice squad.
Signed by Seattle as an undrafted rookie out of Fort Valley State, Lockette spent most of last season on the Seahawks’ practice squad before being promoted to the active roster Dec. 14. He rejoined Seattle’s practice squad after not making the 53-man roster to open this season, but was released last week.
–Punter Brad Moorman was released by the Bills, who re-signed rookie Shawn Powell.
Moorman, a former Pro Bowl punter, was reportedly let go for struggling with directional punts.
A vested veteran, Moorman will receive his full $1.425 million base salary as termination pay, according to ProFootballTalk.com. Should he sign with another team, he would still keep the money from the Bills.
—Falcons defensive end John Abraham is facing charges of obstructing police and fire departments after he was arrested Monday night in Atlanta when he wouldn’t leave an area in which a woman was threatening to jump off a building.
Officers had blocked off an area with crime-scene tape in midtown Atlanta where the woman was located and Abraham wouldn’t leave the restricted zone despite repeated requests by firefighters and police officers, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. The woman didn’t jump and reportedly suffered no injuries.