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Found October 09, 2012 on Larry Brown Sports:

Via Larry Brown Sports:

Lance Easley may go down as one of the most infamous NFL officials of all time, and he only officiated a few regular-season games. As you probably know, Easley is the referee who ruled that Packers cornerback M.D. Jennings and Seahawks receiver Golden Tate had simultaneous possession on this Hail Mary play that gave Seattle a win over Green Bay. The replay appeared to show Easley made the wrong call.

While the two players may have eventually shared possession of the ball, that appeared to happen when Tate clearly wrestled his arms into the mix after Jennings had already established possession. Easley didn’t see it that way then and he doesn’t see it that way now.

“Yes,” Easley said on TODAY when asked if he believes it was the right call. “Until they change the rule, I can’t do anything about the call.”

Easley added that he wishes the players would have batted the ball down instead so the situation could have been avoided, but he believes he made the right call based on the rules. Most would argue that the blown call resulted in the end of the referee lockout, but Easley believes that would have happened following Week 3 regardless.

“I think (the lockout) was pretty much resolved before that issue,” he explained. “It kind of was an exclamation point on the whole deal. The controversy (was) on a play that’s never happened in the history of the NFL. You can go back to the archives. You will not find that play.”

Easley, who never seemed all that phased by the call and was out partying that night, has clearly made peace with the situation. He is not the only one who thinks the call was the right one, but he’s certainly a part of the minority. If he can successfully convince himself that the Green Bay-Seattle game was well-officiated, more power to him.


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  • Easley is the typical male official that can do no WRONG. He is a really "small" person who will rationalize his decision until his dying day.. He was wrong, incorrect in the decision. Hopefully, this will prevent him from ever officiating any type of sport in the future.
    Does the NFL do urine checks on the refs pre-game??????
  • While the popular decision is to berate the ref and give the call to GB the correct call was made as rationalized by the NFL rules. Watch the video again and see who has possession when the GB defenders feet (both of them) finally touch the ground.
  • you must be a fan of Sanddusky too...
  • Nice!
  • I'm so glad 4 out of the 5 (currently responding) know the rules and aren't afraid to make the right call along with Easley. I couldn't believe how many, clear green bay fans, including sports reporters don't know the rules!
  • One major thing everyone seems to be ignoring is the BLATANT Offensive Pass Interference!! The call was wrong. No matter who came up with the ball Green Bay should of won that game... and btw, I am a Redskins fan! HAIL!
  • HTTR!!!
  • But we DO know the rules. But what you are missing is the fact that when both players finally touched the ground with both feet Tate removed his right hand twice from the football. Why did he do this? Because he never had clear possession of the football and was trying to GAIN possession of the ball. This is cearly shown in the tape in slow motion while they are on the ground. Jennings had both arms clutching the ball to his chest at the top of the apex of his leap all the way to the ground. There is no simultaneous catch. Tate is shown grabbing the right forearm of Jennings' with his right hand and with his left hand Tate is touching the bottom of the football. Less than 20% of the surface area of the ball. As they both come down Tate is shown removing his right hand from Jennings right forearm and tries to grasp at the ball again. Both feet touching the ground, Tate still is trying to gain possession of the ball by removing his right hand twice. Again, no simultaneous catch according the NFL rules. You and Lance Easley are wrong.
  • You obviously don't understand the NFL simultaneous catch rules EITHER. Rule 8 - Section 3 - Article 1 - Item 5: Simultaneous Catch. It is not a simultaneous catch if a player gains control first and an opponent subsequently gains joint control.

    Its VERY black and white. Feet on the ground mean a completed catch, you do not have to have feet on the ground to have CONTROL. Control was NOT acquired simultaneously.
  • You are stupid too! It's reading the rules with a slant to make it work for you. Terrible call.
  • You need to watch the tape again - Tate's hand comes off the ball as GB establishes possesion on the ground...he did not have simultaneous posession...wrong call, poor referee (plus he was rated "not ready for division one ball" by a ref school.
  • You are so correct. ESPN did a "Sports Science" break down of the video tape and clearly showed that Tate did not have possesion of the ball and was clearly trying to GAIN possesion of the ball by removing his right hand twice to try to GAIN possession of the ball. The tape clearly showed that Jennings had possession of the ball at the top of the apex of his leap all the way to the ground - both arms clutching the ball to his chest. Tate actually had a hold of Jennings right forearm with his own right hand and with the left hand was only touching the bottom of the football - less than 30% of the surface area of the football.
  • No it wasn't the correct call. See reply to jdlkiss below. And when a players feet come to the ground has nothing to do with simultaneous possession.
  • Yes, I'm going by the rules, and, yes, you are correct in knowing that the official has to make the ruling once both players' feet touch the ground within the field of play. But you missed something in the replay video along with Lance Easley, the ref who made the call. If you look carefully, Tate removes his right hand from the ball and tries to get a better grip on the ball which is securely tucked into both arms and the chest of M.D. Jennings. Why does Tate remove his right hand twice from the ball? Because he DOES NOT have possesion of the ball and he is CLEARLY trying to GAIN possession of the ball. Possesion belonged to the defender, Jennings. Green Bay wins. (Not that it matters, but I'm a Ram fan, but more importantly,I'm always for fair play.)
  • You obviously don't understand the NFL simultaneous catch rules EITHER. Rule 8 - Section 3 - Article 1 - Item 5: Simultaneous Catch. It is not a simultaneous catch if a player gains control first and an opponent subsequently gains joint control.

    Its VERY black and white. Feet on the ground mean a completed catch, you do not have to have feet on the ground to have CONTROL. Control was NOT acquired simultaneously.
  • You are as stupid as the refs! Get your head out of the butt of the NFL Commissioner.
  • Well said... According to SomeHappyDude, him and Easley must be pals!!!
  • I agree 100%. That guy must be on serious drugs if he can't see he was wrong. What is he looking at that the rest of the world is missing. He should not be allowed to officiate a pee wee game.
  • I couldnt agree with you more. The arrogance of this man and the head coach. To make a mistake is human, to be denial is arrogance. He missed two calls on the same play in front of his face. May he never ref in the Professional Football again and pray he gets some humility before meeting the main ref upsairs.
  • why should he change call? it was correct. I have only seen it called twice in more than 30 years of watching adn playing football, but he got it right. Tate had a hand between Jennings arms and then wrapped a hand in front and on top. That is the exact definition of the rule. both had possession--call to offense.
    When I first saw the play, without any commentary, I thought Green Bay won thinking it was the reeiver Greg Jennings. but then I said i needed to check who was on offense because the call goes to the offense. Actually I was happier the second way because I prefer to seen Green Bay lose anytime.
  • it is clear that you have not seen the ESPN sience review... So please do not comment on something you do not know nothing about.... You must be a replacement ref!!!
  • what is sience?
    what are you trying to say?
  • typical jerk
  • You are completely incorrect. The call was completely incorrect. In order for it to be simultaneous possession both Jennings and Tate had to both gain control at the same time. From watching the replay, it is CLEAR that Jennings had control with both hands on the ball while Tate only had one hand between the ball and Jennings' chest. On the way to the ground is when Tate got his second hand on the ball. By definition, it is not simultaneous possession if another player grabs the ball after is has already been grabbed by someone else. Tate "grabbed" it second. It was in no way at all simultaneous possession as the rule is written. He got the call wrong. He should stand up and admit it and be done with it. Clearly you are not a REAL sports fan. While I enjoy certain teams losing, I in no way enjoy teams being cheated out of victory. I would rather the game be called by the rules. You are a person the NFL could do without as a fan!
  • No matter how much GB fans and Aaron Rodgers would like to think it was the wrong call and will argue it until the end of time the rules say it was the right call. If GB wanted to win the game they should have been better. The first player to secure the ball was on GB but he was still in the air. While in the air the Seahawk got his hands on the ball as well. When both players feet eventually hit the ground it was simultaneous possession. By rule the ball gets awarded to the offense. Seahawks TD. Simple.
  • you need to get with the program!!! I agree,, the packers should have not played the way they did. However, to accept a call like this? really, you must not be a fan of any team...
  • You must not be looking at both players' feet. It's not a catch until their feet come down in bounds. Now go look and see who's feet touch down first.
  • When a players feet coming down has nothing to do with simultaneous possession. Jennings had possession of the ball first, and Tates hand came in second. It was in no way simultaneous and the replay shows it. Easley got it wrong. Plain and simple!
  • You obviously don't understand the NFL simultaneous catch rules EITHER. Rule 8 - Section 3 - Article 1 - Item 5: Simultaneous Catch. It is not a simultaneous catch if a player gains control first and an opponent subsequently gains joint control.

    Its VERY black and white. Feet on the ground mean a completed catch, you do not have to have feet on the ground to have CONTROL. Control was NOT acquired simultaneously.
  • Wow, u r as stupid as the others. Read the rules the right way.
  • Serious? What video tape are you watching? Or better yet, what planet are you from? The vidoe tape shows Tate has his right hand on M.D. Jennings' right lower forearm, near his wrist. Tate's other hand is only TOUCHING the bottom portion of the ball - less than 20% of the surface area of the ball. According to the NFL rules this is not a simultaneous catch. When Jennings' feet touch the ground Jennings has full possession of the ball with both hands clutching the ball to his CHEST! Tate removes his right hand twice as they are lying on the ground to try and GAIN possession of the ball. Still not a simultaneous catch. Sorry, you and Lance Easley are not even qualified to ref a Pee Wee game.
  • I totally agree. The first player to catch the guy holding the ball should get the score!
  • Worst Call Ever? Hardly...
  • I agree, the defensive player first had control of the ball, but neither player was "down", so both could continue to try to gain possession. When the first player goes "down", then the play is over & whomever had control of the ball should be awarded the catch. On the way down, the offensive player also got both hands on the ball. It looked like both players went "down" simulataneously with simulataneous possession. So the call was right. I agree with SomeHappyDude.
  • Your explanation is incorrect. Simultaneous possession has nothing to do with when they go to the ground and when the play is dead. It has to do with who obtains control of the ball first. If you read the rule, simultaneous possession does not apply when a player grabs the ball after control has already been established by another player. In order for it to apply, Tate would have had to have both hands on the ball at the same time as Jennings having both hands on the ball, which he did not. The ref got it wrong. Plain and simple and on video!
  • Rule 8 - Section 3 - Article 1 - Item 5: Simultaneous Catch. It is not a simultaneous catch if a player gains control first and an opponent subsequently gains joint control.

    Its VERY black and white. Feet on the ground mean a completed catch, you do not have to have feet on the ground to have CONTROL. Control was NOT acquired simultaneously.
  • The ultimate decision on that play was reached by the replay officials- who were not replacements.
  • The replay officials were most likely in league with the regular refs and a sa show of solidarity they basically said "let's agree with the call and watch how f**ked up it gets - let's give them enough rope to hang themselves...and it worked - the regular refs were back in days
  • The replay officials have nothing to do with overturning calls or making corrections. They only instruct the on-field official on whether he should review the play or not. They in no way are supposed to influence the official on the field when reviewing a play.
  • The debate over the simultaneous possession call will not go away as it is based on the assumption that the "regular" refs always got the call right! Since the return of the "regular" refs there has not been a controversial call (chuckle)!
  • Ironically, the replay ref who CONFIRMED the call was NOT a replacement ref.
  • The officials in the booth who call for a replay do not make the call. Their only job is to let the head official on the field know if a play was questionable enough to be reviewed. They in no way confirm a call on the field that is being reviewed under the hood! The head official watches all available angles of replays and makes his own determination based on the evidence he sees under the hood!
  • You are half right. This year the rule has changed. Replay officials in the booth are obligated to review every touchdown call.
  • You are incorrect. Confirmed, according to the NFL rules means they see the same thing on video that supports the official's ruling on the field. This was a "the play stands" call by the replay official in the booth. This means he could not see anything on the video that was proof enough to OVERTURN the ref's call on the field. This is not suuport of the Lance Easley's call on the field. If the replay official had more time to break down the video tape frame by frame, he would clearly see that this was no simultaneous catch. Tate's right hand grabs a hold of Jennings' right forearm at the time when Jennings catches the ball with both hands and pulls it to his chest. Tate's other hand is only "TOUCHING" the bottom of the ball - less than 20% of the surface area of the ball. This is not a simultaneous catch, according the NFL rules. After both players' feet touch the ground, the video clearly shows Tate removing his right hand twice. Why does he do this? Because Tate does NOT have possession of the ball and he is trying to GAIN possession of the ball. Not a simultaneous catch according to the rules. Green Bay got screwed. And, no, I'm not a Green Bay fan. I'm a fan of FAIR play.
  • This guy is a complete joke!!!! He is an idiot...
  • Easly is a joke
  • Terrible call that will go down in history as a joke by an untrained ref that should never been on the field. Hopefully he has seen his last game. Still angry !!! And then there's the replay offical that must have been asleep.
  • you people need to watch the ESPN sports sience...
  • I just did... and you need to read the rules. ESPN sports science breaks down the exact moments when hands reach the ball, but that has nothing to do with the rules. The rules break down 'possession' into three elements... control, both feet down, and maintain control after impact. Sure, Jennings got the ball first, but by the time Jennings got both feet down, Tate also had both his hands on it (Sports Science even says it was 0.52 seconds later). By definition, Tate gets the TD via 'simultaneous' rule. The rule doesn't care who looks like they have more control, just that both had control.
  • The simultaneous catch rule states "It is not a simultaneous catch if a player gains control first and an opponent subsequently gains joint control. " Jennings had control first. It was his interception. The official got it wrong. Its blatant on the replay.
  • Chubby is 100% right.
  • The stand in Ref made the correct call..........The back line judge on the far hash mark was not in position to make the call and he should not have even signaled time out.....The sideline Ref who made the call was correct.
    By rule definition......GB won't like it because they lost on the field..they had 60 minutes to show they deserved to win, but DID NOT......they loose !
  • Easley was wrong. His ruling on the field was not based on the rule as it is written. And by the way...loose means your pants do not fit without a belt. Lose means you did not win.
  • What is a catch? Control of the ball and 2 feet down in bounds.

    Tate had his hands on the ball and 2 feet down- almost his butt on the ground BEFORE Jennings even gets his 2nd foot on the ground.
    Tate completed the process of the catch long before Jennings. Everyone looks at the hands, but WATCH THE FEET.
  • you still need to control the ball.
  • Feet have nothing to do with it you idiot. Its not about completing a "catch". Its about the rule of simultaneous possession, which means both players gain control at the same time. That did not happen. Tate grabbed the ball after Jennings had already established control. By rule, there was no simultaneous possession because it was under Jennings control first. Easley got it wrong. He should just admit it and stop riding this 15 seconds of fame for being an idiot!
  • again, chubby is correct.
  • I find his stance interesting in that last week I know he admitted that "he possibly made the wrong call" so which is it?
  • He really should just dummy up. Only thing he did right was get the regular refs back.
  • Okay the catch its contravercial but there was a clear view on the video of a pass interference... so technically the game shouldnt of been over they would of had another chance to get the touchdown
  • Wrong. The game doesn't end on a DEFENSIVE penalty. But pass interference on the offense would have ended it. Like Lance Easley, "Better to keep silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt".
  • The pass interference was offensive, not defensive. It would have resulted in the end of the game with no touchdown and a Green Bay win.
  • What choice does the ref have? Of course he will stick to the call,just be glad you no longer ref places like philly they bomb santa with snow balls imagine what in store for you!
  • "Both hands on the ball" does not establish "possession". You have to have control at the moment you are "down". At the first occasion of Jennings being "down", both players had equal possession of the ball. Possession goes to offense; touchdown. It WAS the correct call as the rules are currently written. If you don't like that, get the rules changed. But until you are successful at that, the same play if it happened again could ONLY be correctly ruled as an offensive touchdown. Period. You can moan, complain, or argue any miniscule detail you want, but it won't change the fact that the call was made correctly. I realize this isn't the popular way to look at it, but I could care less. Right is right, and Easley was right.
  • The simultaneous catch rule says "It is not a simultaneous catch if a player gains control first and an opponent subsequently gains joint control." Jennings had control first, Tate gained control after it had already been established by Jennings. The call was wrong based on the rule of a simultaneous catch. Green Bay got screwed. Wrong is wrong...Easley was wrong, as supported by the rule!
  • He didn't have control. That's the point. When he came down to the ground, both had their hands on the ball. That's all that matters, not who grabbed the ball first. You aren't seeing the rule the correct way, and the NFL obviously agrees with me. So, you ARE wrong whether or not you will admit it here.
  • You obviously don't understand the NFL simultaneous catch rules EITHER. Rule 8 - Section 3 - Article 1 - Item 5: Simultaneous Catch. It is not a simultaneous catch if a player gains control first and an opponent subsequently gains joint control.

    Its VERY black and white. Feet on the ground mean a completed catch, you do not have to have feet on the ground to have CONTROL. Control was NOT acquired simultaneously.
  • Who grabbed the ball first means everything in the NFL simultaneous catch rule: Rule 8 - Section 3 - Article 1 - Item 5: Simultaneous Catch. It is not a simultaneous catch if a player gains control first and an opponent subsequently gains joint control.

    Control has nothing to do with feet on the ground. Control can be acquired in the air. Feet on the ground is another requirement IN ADDITION to control for it to be considered a completed catch.
  • This guy made a terrible call and before that call he had virtually no chance of a career in the NFL as an official. He is cashing in on his 15 seconds of fame. We should all ignore him and not give him the celebrity he is seeking.

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