I wanted to comment on the Packer game from Sunday because I found it quite amusing that people were latching onto the incorrect claim that there should have been a facemask call at the end of the game. There was an article on Yahoo sports that claimed an NFL spokesman said that a facemask call should have been made. Doesn't name anyone but makes the claim. JSOnline does a much better job clarifying what happened and why the call wasn't made in their blog entry.
As for the possible facemask penalty on Adams on the very same play, Liu said
it's strictly a judgement call. The NFL eliminated the 5-yard incidental
contact facemask this season and only allows or a 15-yard personal foul if the
player twists or grabs the facemask.
Rule 12, Section 2, Article 5 of the NFL
Rule Book states that "no player shall twist, turn, or pull the facemask of an
opponent in any direction," according to Liu.
The Rule Book describes the
penalty as follows:
"Penalty: For twisting, turning or pulling the mask: loss
of 15 yards. A personal foul. The player may be disqualified if the action
is judged by the official(s) to be of a flagrant nature."
It more than likely
would have been Green or umpire Butch Hannah's call to make. Green was facing
the play from the offensive side of the ball and saw it from about 10 or
15 yards away. Hannah was 9 yards away on the defensive side of the ball
staring directly at Rodgers as Adams hit him.
Neither threw the flag.
rule book uses this example for an incidental facemask in which a penalty is not
"Third-and-10 on A30. Runner A1 runs to the A33, where he is
tackled by B1, who incidentally grasps A1's facemask on the tackle, but it is
not a twist, turn or pull. Ruling: A's ball,fourth-and-seven, on
A33. No foul."
Even funnier is the YouTube video that claims Rodgers had his face ripped off in front of a national television audience.
Watch the video. The defenders hand ends up on Rodgers facemask after it glances off the football, causing the fumble. His momentum carries him forward as he makes the tackle. There is no twisting, pulling, or yanking of the helmet. There is no ripping off the face of Rodgers. In fact I saw an interview of Rodgers after the game and his face looked fine.
It is a judgement call and I think the refs made the right decision. Of course if this happened to Tom Brady or Peyton Manning the flags would have been flying.
See the problem was with Rodgers himself. It is his fault they lost the game. A bad throw to start the game and a bad throw to start overtime. He had Jennings open and it was his job to put the ball in his hands. He didn't. Favre would ha..oh I shouldn't go there.
Also be honest. The Packers defense sucked. The Cardinals defense sucked more. That is the only reason they were in the game. I was shocked by how many times the Cardinal defenders not only left people wide open but also missed the tackle. They took bad angles, tried to hit people instead of tackling or just blew right by them. They were pathetic. Equally pathetic were the Packers though. No one figured out how to cover that crossing play? Of the seam pattern? The linebackers were toasted every time. Where were the safeties? The shocking thing to me was Warner even thinking about throwing to Woodson's side.
People make say this was a great game. Bullshit. It was an exciting game but there was nothing great about it.
Oh and congrats to Charles Woodson for winning Defensive Player of the Year. It was much deserved. Easily the best player on defense in the league this year.