Found November 22, 2012 on
Sitting in Dallas for the Redskins-Cowboys game on FOX, I could hear the screams all the way from Detroit to Atlanta. In the first Thanksgiving Day game of Week 12, an illegal flag caused quite an uproar.
Twice in the last four days, two NFL coaches have been victimized by a bad rule that must be addressed and changed in the offseason. In Week 11, Atlanta coach Mike Smith was penalized for trying to challenge a turnover against Arizona prior to the replay official initiating a review.
Lightning struck again Thursday in the Texans-Lions game Thursday. Here was the situation:
Houston had the ball, second-and-10 from the Houston 19-yard line with 6:50 left in the third quarter. Detroit led 24-14.
Texans running back Justin Forsett carried the ball 81 yards for a touchdown. However, on the play Forsett's knee clearly touched the ground seven yards after he was hit by Detroit's Erik Coleman and Louis Delmas.
Detroit coach Jim Schwartz tossed his challenge flag and was penalized 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct for trying to challenge the ruling. As was the case with Smith, both coaches threw the challenge flag before the replay official initiated a review.
By rule, since the challenge flag came first, both plays could not be reviewed. Had the replay official buzzed the referee to initiate the review before the challenge flag was thrown, the 15-yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct would have remained, however, the play would have been reviewed. And in the case of the Forsett touchdown, it would have been reversed.
Let's address the first aspect of this: how did the officials miss this?
Forsett was obviously down. I will have to admit that this was the NFL's concern when the league moved the umpire into the offensive backfield. Had he been in his old position (5-7 yards behind the line on the defensive side of the ball), he would have had a perfect look. The closest official on this play was the line judge, and Forsett's back was to him.
Knowing this could happen, the league was still comfortable making the change because the league knew replay could correct errors that occurred in this area, whether it was a fumble, a runner being down or a trapped pass.
That's why this rule must be changed. The current rule is counter-intuitive to the reason replay was put in and it penalizes a coach twice. It costs a coach a 15-yard penalty and then disallows a review, where a ruling on the field could have been changed.
It's even more nonsensical that the play could be reviewed if the replay official had initiated the review before the challenge flag was thrown.
Twice in four days? It's a simple rule change. Penalize the coach 15 yards, when he's not entitled to throw the flag, but review the play regardless of when he throws it.
After all, replay is all about getting it right.
BEST OF MAXIM
Justin Forsett scored the longest run in Texans franchise history, an 81-yard dash against the Lions on Thanksgiving. However, it wasn’t a touchdown, but because of an awful NFL rule, it is.Becuase Jim Schwartz threw a challenge flag when the play couldn’t be reviewed, the ref couldn’t review the play. Unfortunate break for the Texans and horrible luck for the Lions.
The holidays are upon us, and evidently the NFL Referees are in the spirit of giving.
In Thanksgiving’s Lions/Texans match-up, the Refs blew a call leading to an 80 yard touchdown by Texans RB Justin Forsett.
As you can see in the video below, Forsett was clearly down with both his knee and his elbow, but the refs missed the call and awarded a touchdown. Usually all scores are...
Justin Forsett recorded the longest run in Houston Texans history in their Thanksgiving Day game against the Detroit Lions. It appeared as if Forsett was dropped after a decent gain, but the whistle was not blown and he continued running as everyone else let up. He ended up in the end zone 81-yards later. Watching [...]
The Houston Texans scored a touchdown on the Detroit Lions today that completely baffles me. Never mind the fact that the referees often seem to be watching a different game than everybody else. Sure, we have the benefit of instant replay, but so do the refs. That is why the rules for review have got to be changed.Anyways, the runner was clearly down, but got up and ran into the...
Just about everyone watching the Lions-Texans game at Ford Field or from their couch Thursday afternoon could see that Justin Forsett had various body parts hitting the ground before he bounced back up and outran the Detroit defense for an 81-yard touchdown score.
So, if the officials had reviewed the play, they likely would have seen it, too.
But here’s the catch: Forsett was...
The NFL world was watching the Houston Texans face the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving Day this year and saw one of the most ridiculous rules in the league on display. RB Justin Forsett took a handoff from QB Matt Schaub and ran up the middle for seven yards. He was hit by a Lions defender spun to the ground with his elbow and knee touching. Not hearing a whistle, Forsett jumped back...
DETROIT Detroit Lions fans kept booing the officials. They also should have been booing their own head coach.
Jim Schwartz appeared to admit as much, pointing to himself and telling his players and coaches, Its on me, after a bizarre sequence gave the Houston Texans a touchdown Thursday at Ford Field.
Officially, it went down as an 81-yard touchdown run by Justin Forsett, cutting...
KEY: Texans star running back Arian Foster usually basks in the spotlight but backup Justin Forsett made the biggest play of the game, though it shouldn’t have counted. Forsett scored on an 81-yard run in the third quarter, pulling the Texans within three points. He should have been ruled down by contact in Texans territory but the automatic replay review was nullified when Lions...
DETROIT -- Justin Forsett never stopped running and wound up with a record. His Houston Texans teammates took the same approach and wound up with their second overtime victory in five days. Forsett scored a controversial 81-yard, third-quarter touchdown and Shayne Graham kicked a 32-yard field goal with 2:21 remaining in overtime to give the Texans a wild 34-31 victory over the...
A top NFL executive says the rule that negated using video replay to confirm a Houston touchdown Thursday ''may be too harsh'' and will be re-examined immediately.
Ray Anderson, the league's director of football operations, says a 15-yard penalty for throwing the challenge flag on a play that is automatically reviewed might be enough.
For now, throwing the challenge...
Jim Schwartz held the challenge flag in his hand, certain Houston's long touchdown wouldn't count. Running back Justin Forsett was clearly down around his own 25-yard line, and that's where the ball would be spotted once the play was reviewed.
Then Schwartz threw his red flag onto the field - and in doing so, he ensured that the Texans' dubious scoring play would...
The Lions have proudly hosted a home game on Thanksgiving Day since 1934.It is as reliable of a Thanksgiving tradition as turkey, stuffing, and a tryptophan induced nap. This year’s match-up of the Houston Texans and the Detroit Lions was a Thanksgiving Day overtime brawl that turned out to be one of the most exciting and controversial games that the NFL has ever seen. The Lions...
(Eds: APNewsNow. Will be updated. With AP Photos.) By LARRY LAGE AP Sports Writer The Detroit Lions have a long weekend to think about blowing a second straight game and falling to 4-7 in a once-promising season turned sour.
The Lions lost 34-31 in overtime to the Houston Texans on Thursday only four days after a 24-20 loss to the Green Bay Packers. Detroit led in the fourth quarter...
Another Thanksgiving Lions game and another heartbreaking loss in what’s become a disastrous 2012 season. Detroit was also stunned as they lost a game they controlled most of the day. This all eventually came to a crashing end as Shayne Graham won it for the Texans in OT 34-31 completing the Motor City Meltdown seemingly stemming from a bad call earlier in the game (which I’ll...