GREEN BAY, WI - NOVEMBER 15: Johnny Jolly #97 of the Green Bay Packers fights for a loose ball with Felix Jones #28 of the Dallas Cowboys at Lambeau Field on November 15, 2009 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Packers defeated the Cowboys 17-7. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
The NFL's vice president of officiating Mike Pereira, who is becoming a name of note through his weekly visits to the NFL Network, recently revisited the fumble/no fumble, challenge/no challenge situation from last week's Cowboys-Packers game. This was only one of a number of questionable calls, but arguably, along with Mike McCarthy's phantom challenge, the most notable.
Concerning the latter, per Pro Football Talk, Pereira said that he was "shocked that we started to even go to the monitor to review it;" "we," of course, meaning referee Jeff Triplette. Pereira went on to say that the Packers should have been charged a fifteen yard unsportsmanlike penalty for the transgression. "We should have thrown the flag right then for unsportsmanlike conduct -- it's a 15-yard penalty," Pereira said. "We were wrong in not doing that."
More frustrating for Dallas fans was the call on the fumble--which, in all likelihood, was botched--and the fact that plays of this sort are not reviewable. Pereira found this call a sight less contentious, according to the Dallas Morning News, saying the "recovery of a loose ball in the field of play is not reviewable."
Granted, but Triplette missed the initial call. Right?
If it were reviewable, the call would have been overturned?
"In my mind it would not have changed...For the same reason it wouldn't be a catch because in my mind the recovery of a loose ball is the same as trying to maintain possession of the pass," Pereira said. "If you go to the ground, it's a process and you've got to hold on to it throughout the whole process."
How much this call affected the outcome of the game is arguable but, due to the seeming ineptitude of the Dallas offense last Sunday, I'll give the zebras benefit of the doubt on this front.
Still, this one seems pretty awful.
When Jones fell on the ball, it was clearly in his possession; Johnny Jolly's labored ripping of the ball from Jones' grasp, if anything, should've corroborated the possession. Apparently not.
Instead, it was Packers ball on the seven.
Needless to say, this was far from an exhibition in efficient officiating.