Reflections on Sunday’s NFL Title Games

On January 21, 2019, in NFL, by Stephen

By Stephen Nover

How can you not have strong feelings after watching Sunday’s NFL title games? Here are mine.

NFL officials call every tick-tack penalty from phantom holding calls to bogus roughing the passer calls. Then, in the biggest NFC game of the season, they blatantly miss the most obvious pass interference call of the season in the Rams-Saints game when New Orleans defensive back Nickell Robey-Coleman wiped out LA receiver Tommylee Lewis before the ball got to him.

I had the Rams in the game. So I was hoping there wouldn’t be a reversal on the call. And there couldn’t be since it was a penalty that wasn’t called, which is the opposite of what usually happens. Sean Payton couldn’t do anything except scream his head off to hopeless avail.

I hate to say it because NFL games already have become more courtroom than hitting, but there should be some recourse when an official misses an obvious call. A coach should be able to use a challenge and have the replay booth – which already is in place – examine a play if he believes a penalthy should have been called. It would just count as one of his challenges.

I had my largest totals play of the playoffs in the Patriots-Chiefs game with Under 56. The score was 14-0 at halftime. I knew it was going to be a sweat, though, when at halftime I received a well-intentioned but foolish email congratulating me on my huge Over/Under winner.

Yep, 38 points scored in the fourth quarter. And another ripped up Under Patriots playoff ticket. The Over is now 7-1 in the Patriots’ last eight postseason games, including both of them this season.

The Chiefs win the game and the total goes Under if Dee Ford doesn’t line up offsides with 55 seconds left. His boneheadedness negated a pass interception that would have sealed the win for Kansas City. How does Ford commit such an utterly stupid infraction? Sure it’s heat of the moment. But Ford is a pro and an accomplished pass rusher. None of his teammates could have seen him and told him to move back a step?

Kansas City tied with Pittsburgh for the most sacks in the NFL with 52. Chris Jones, Ford and Justin Houston are all sack masters. Tom Brady dropped back 46 times to throw on Sunday. He was not sacked once. Brady gets all the credit. Certainly he should be applauded and canonized. But there should be some recognition for New England guards Joe Thuney, Shaq Mason and center David Andrews. The Patriots’ interior offensive line has been tremendous.



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