A Catch Outside the Rulebook

They say God works in mysterious ways, and so seem to do the referees at last Sunday’s game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Green Bay Packers.

With close to four minutes to go at Lambeau Field the Dallas Cowboys had to go for it on 4th and 2 since they were trailing by 21-25. Probably running the ball was the safe bet with DeMarco Murray on the field but you also had Jason Witten who almost never fails to catch a ball and the “X Factor” named Dez Bryant.

Tony Romo would have thrown an interception if the game was happening in any of the past four seasons. But  a solid performance despite a heavily injured back and knees plus having some of the best stats in the fourth quarter around the league this season suggested otherwise.

The ball was snapped and Tony looked for his target. Number 88 was running full speed down the left sideline and jumped into the air to make a catch of a ball that seemed almost impossible to go after. Even harder, to control it considering the momentum of the run and the man to man pressure that Sam Shields was creating.

Viewers around the globe saw Dez coming down with the ball as one of the most impressive plays a football player has ever made. Unfortunately the Green Bay coaching staff, referees in New York and on the field saw otherwise. They believed Bryant did not have complete control of the ball. Days later #IStillThinkItWasACatch.

Here is why. Dez grabbed the ball mid air and came down with it with full control. He took three steps with full control of the ball before trying to reach for the endzone. After those three steps he lunged for the goal line instead of playing it safe but that is just what Dez does. Here comes the part I never understand.

If Mike Pereira, FOX expert analyst for officiating says the refs made the right call, even if Obama said it was the right call I would not agree. When did the ball touch the ground? His knees did, his elbow did, his hands did, but the ball never ever did. The referee closest to the action never saw that ball touch the ground. I’ve seen the videos and I’ve seen the pictures. That ball did not pop loose because of contact with the ground. How is that considered losing possession?

Obviously if you are falling with your hand below the ball and just grabbing it with one hand the force that the ground has on your hand will be greater and anything might move. That was the case. The ball popped but it never touched the ground. Even after it came “loose” he recovered it in the endzone.

Mike Pereira did not agree it was a football move to stretch out his arm and reach for the 1-yard line. He simply did not because he might have never seen something like that. No one had, it was a catch that maybe only Dez Bryant can do. Even Odell Beckham Jr. from the New York Giants considered that a catch, and he knows a thing or two about big plays.

Apparently It was a catch too good to be true. Even the Green Bay Packers know it but by not admitting it their chances to win the game and make it to the conference final grew exponentially. Both teams had played a great game that did not deserve to end in controversy.

If it was ruled a catch we would be looking back at Romo’s most clutch throw, Bryant’s best ever catch and a possible win by the Dallas Cowboys to play the Seahawks at Century-Link Field.
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