More Problems with Officiating in Packer-Viking Game


For all of the whining I did about the officiating during last week’s game, I missed this.  And it could have been crucial.  Adrian Peterson removed his helmet after scoring the go-ahead touchdown with just over two minutes left in the game.  So the Vikings should have kicked from the 15 yards line.  The guys at PFT are all over it, here.  They write: “Bottom line?  Minnesota’s 28-27 win carries almost as much tarnish as Denver’s Week Two win over San Diego.”

Hard to disagree.  It’s a silly hypothetical, but If the Packers had run the exact same plays with the exact same results, Mason Crosby would have been kicking a 37-yarder.

On a related note, NFL director of officiating, Mike Periera, reviewed the play on NFL Network.  He does this segment every week.  Ostensibly, he reviews the plays and tells viewers whether the officials made the wrong or right calls.  (You won’t be surprised to learn that they’re almost always right.)  So you also won’t be surprised to learn that he thinks Al Riveron made the right call on Aaron Rodgers’ “illegal forward pass.”  Says Pereira: “So, it is intentional grounding. The mistake was, we should have called it that in the first place and not say illegal forward pass even though he clearly did mean to say intentional grounding. Kind of an interesting play because it’s not your natural throwing motion, so the standards are higher.”

How does Pereira know that Riveron “clearly did mean to say intention grounding?”  He doesn’t tell us.  Read Tom Silverstein’s entire post to further erode your confidence in NFL officiating.


7 Responses to “More Problems with Officiating in Packer-Viking Game”

  1. DaveK Says:

    Peterson did this TWICE in this game. The first time was when he fumbled on the 4th down play. It is the 8:58 minute in the 4th per my DVR. He unstraps and takes his helmet off right next to two refs. Stands there and argues with them about it for a minute before walking off the field.

    A few plays later they flag Colledge on a holding call that was clearly not holding. Aikman commented that he “didn’t see much there”. Grant ran for 12 yards on that play. It should have been first down at about the 16. Instead it is 1st and 20 on the 37. Three plays later then kick the field goal to go up six.

  2. Dave in Tucson Says:

    I’ve never been a fan of the penalty for taking off your helmet. It just seems stupid to me. But even then, looking at the YouTube vid that PFP linked to, it appears Peterson’s left foot was just barely in the field of play when he took his helmet off, and once he got up, he was completely out of bounds. A foul for that would’ve been pretty ticky-tack.

    Beyond that, there’s no way obsessing over this is ever going to change anything. The NFL is not going to award the Packers a win, or a do-over, or anything else, even if they do agree there were bad calls, or bad no-calls.

    To say that one or two bad outcomes cost the Packers the game is to deny the importance of the rest of the game. Every game (that doesn’t go to overtime) is the sum total of 60 minutes of regulation play. Every play counts.

    For me, the problem with the play was not that Peterson wasn’t flagged, the problem was that the Packer Defense couldn’t stop him running 29 yards to the endzone.


  3. Ace Says:

    Safety a weak but marginal call-may have been correct. Helmet removal had no influence on outcome. Packers were totally outplayed except DBs and a kick return. There were a handful of weak calls going both ways in the game. Probably a poorer call was the one on Harris early on when Wade manhandled him-gave Vikes a first down. But Pack didn’t deserve to win and had ample opportunity. Get over the penalty thing. Last year they got more than their share of breaks and close wins.

  4. sfhayes Says:

    We were pretty clear that the Packers didn’t play well enough to win. But if the penalties were lopsided (they were), or called incorrectly (on several occasions) and could have affected the outcome (most definitely), it would actually be stupid for us NOT to discuss them at some point. Ace — you can’t say the helmet removal had “no influence on outcome.” (And why you talk like that?) We have no idea whether Minnesota kicking off from their own 15 yard-line with just over two minutes to go would have changed the outcome. I think there’s a decent case to suggest it might have done so.

    None of this excuses the Packers’ horrible offensive performance and if you’ll scroll down to read our comments, you’ll see plenty of that. But the officiating mattered. If there shouldn’t be a prohibition on a player taking off his helmet, fine. But if that rule exists, the officials are there to call it. When they don’t, they deserve to be criticized.

  5. Frank Metzke Says:

    It’s true last year we had more calls go our way because we had a legend on our team. Just like Elway did with the Broncos or Marino with the Dolphins, or MJ with the Bulls for that matter: how many times did he travel making some insane play to the hoop? Countless.

    We, as Packer fans and as hard as it may be, have to bite the bullet and realize that we are going to have less calls going our way simply because Favre isn’t on the team. Case in point, and one of the announcers said this: “Do you think Favre gets flagged” on that alleged safety? Of course not. Same with the week before with the Titans: Greg Jennings was going nuts because pass interference wasn’t called on a long bomb. Do you think they call it if Favre is QB? I bet they do.

    The safety call wasn’t even the one of the penalities that really bothered me because Rodgers was under duress. But the BS call on Harris extended a drive for the Vikings, and two BS holding calls killed great runs by Grant. Those calls completely change the complexity of the game. Truthfully, I really didn’t enjoy the game much because of the officials. I’m not saying we should have won because frankly we didn’t deserve to win, but playing the Vikings AND the officials stinks.

    Also if you factor in that we are the youngest and most penalized team in the league, we are going to have MORE questionable penalties go against us in the future. That’s not going to change either because the officials KNOW we are the most penalized team in the league so they’ll throw a flag when they’re in question. So it’s kinda a Catch-22.

    (While I’m on a complete RANT) I’m going to ask: What is up with Aikman? Does it bother anyone how he says GREEN bay? Or how about the comment that all these fans come from Green Bay?? What an idiot!? I guess his “Cowboy’s are America’s Team mentality” is clouding his judgement. Geez, there are Packer fans eveywhere. I wonder how many on this chat are from GB. Anywho, it did also bother me that AP never seems wears his helmet. Good to see I’m not alone.

    Hopefully we get some calls go our way at HOME at Lambeau this week. One can only hope. Oh, and sorry about the rant..

  6. bucky Says:

    I wonder how many on this chat are from GB.

    I live in Maine, but I’m from Milwaukee (Shorewood and WFB). Never lived in Green Bay in my life.

  7. Joe Says:

    I wonder how many on this chat are from GB.

    Never lived in Green Bay. Grew up in Oconto Falls (about 35 miles north of Green Bay)and now live in Whitefish Bay.

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