A late defensive holding call in Super Bowl LVII is now the latest NFL controversy.
On 3rd and 8, Philadelphia Eagles’ James Bradberry was penalized on a fade route to JuJu Smith-Schuster, but many think the refs should have eaten the whistle.
It was for sure a ticky-tack call that plenty of defensive backs get away with all game, and the fact that the flag was thrown with less than two minutes left in the biggest game of the season caused some uproar.
The Kansas City Chiefs’ drive continued, they were able to waste some clock, and instead of the Eagles getting the ball back with about 1:50 left and a timeout, they didn’t get possession until after Harrison Butker kicked a 27-yard field goal with eight seconds left – it turned out to be the Super Bowl winner.
LeBron James led the reaction.
Pat McAfee offered his thoughts on the penalty, as well.
“That ref making that holding call at that time at that stage at that game? Super Bowl? Huh? Huh?!…” he said. “Hey refs – can’t f—ing call that there. Okay? It’s not about you. Now was there a hold? I guess. If you stop and go frame by frame, he had his hands on him, but nonetheless, at that stage? Come on! we were robbed of a potential overtime game in the Super Bowl!”
The holding penalty was criticized to the point where “The Refs” was a top trend on Twitter.
The call comes just four days after NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said officiating is the best it’s ever been.
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“I don’t think it’s ever been better in the league,” Goodell said at his annual Super Bowl week news conference. “There are over 42,000 plays in a season. Multiple infractions could occur on any play. Take that out or extrapolate that. That’s hundreds if not millions of potential fouls. And our officials do an extraordinary job of getting those.”
Goodell did add that officials “are not perfect, and officiating never will be. We’ve also had obviously replay and other aspects that help us address those issues to make sure they’re not something that we can’t correct on the field.”
The Chiefs won their third Super Bowl in franchise history, 38-35.