Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Bending the Rules

Kevin Curtis was mauled by Rodderick Hood to end the Eagles season. Coming out of the break Kev's body is flailing while he is falling down, he awkwardly lunges away from Hood's hands which are all over his back trying to drag him to the ground and as he goes to reach for the ball he can't even extend his arms. Other than a quick comment by Aikman about how interference could have been called, little was said and the game ended. All was well and we're celebrating the Cards in the Super Bowl as it's the greatest thing to happen in the NFL.

My offensive minded objectives were obliged three years ago after the Patriots decided the only way to stop the Colts offense was to tackle their receivers all the way down the field. The Patriot defense held their way all the way to a Super Bowl championship in 2004, but the groping ways of defense were soon to change. An officials emphasis was made pre 2005 and defenders were forced to actually cover guys instead of the popular strip search technique. On the change Rodney Harrison was quoted saying "It's a tough rule. Every time you knock a ball down you have to hold your breath and look around (for a flag). I just think football should be football, stop favoring offenses."

The rule of pass interference has existed in professional football since the forward pass. Actions that constitute an interference call consist of contact by a defender who is not playing the ball and such contact restricts the receiver's opportunity to catch the ball, grabbing or hooking a receivers body, or arms in such a manor that restricts his ability to catch the ball, as well as playing through the back of a receiver in an attempt to get to the ball. The rule book continues to go into detail on not only pass interference, but defensive holding. So while defensive players throw out "just let us play football" remember that all games have structure and rules and raping a guy 10 yards down a football field isn't just playing, it's cheating.

It's been three years since the pass interference/holding change was instigated and officials are already allowing more and more contact. "Go defense!" The Redskins offensive staff turned in over 17 interference no calls on just me, not all of our receivers, just #47. I understand that officials get a hard time for making calls, but it is a major advantage for a defender to have his hands all over a receiver. Instead of having to honor a receivers ability to run a great route and make a move they sit and wait at a distance they think they can grab the guy and just figure they wont get called.

I guess that until every receiver starts throwing up their hands like Curtis does after this no-call, defenders will keep getting away with this. Check out the video and tell me this is not a blatant pass interference at the 1:10 mark...

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