Sunday, November 25, 2012

NFL Ejections: Alberto Riveron's crew (1, 2, 3)

Referee Alberto Riveron's crew ejected Bengals offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth for instigating a fight/throwing a punch and Raiders defensive tackle Tommy Kelly and defensive end Lamarr Houston for leaving the sideline/bench area during the 4th quarter of the Raiders-Bengals game. With 7:16 remaining in the 4th quarter, Bengals offensive tackle Andre Smith was called for a false start; however, as the ball had been snapped and both teams were engaged in play at the time of the whistle, Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton—operating from the shotgun position—was tackled, an action which Whitworth took offense to, drawing a flag for unnecessary roughness and resulting in a fight. At the time of the ejections, the Bengals were leading, 27-10. The Bengals ultimately won the contest, 34-10.

Immediately prior to the false start, a pass from Dalton to wide receiver Mohamed Sanu was completed and a fumble was forced by Raiders cornerback Joselio Hanson. However, an inadvertent whistle prematurely killed the play while the ball was loose in bounds and prior to the Raiders' ensuing recovery and return for a touchdown. Pursuant to NFL Rule 7-2-n, "when an official sounds his whistle erroneously ... the ball becomes dead immediately." Accordingly, Riveron offered the team last in possession (Bengals) the opportunity to replay the down or to put the ball in play where it had been declared dead via the inadvertent whistle, either option negating the apparent Oakland score. Cincinnati elected to replay the down, subsequently resulting in the aforementioned false start sequence.

Wrap: Oakland Raiders at Cincinnati Bengals, 11/25/12
Video: As officials whistle a false start penalty, Andy Dalton is tackled and a bedlam of a brawl ensues


Jack said...

Inadvertents are awful, really ruin chances but there's absolutely no recourse, no way to fix it that's fair to both teams. Just a bad situation made 100x worse by frustrated players on both sides on the next play. Credit to Dalton for at least taking the tackle like a true QB and not retaliating for a hit that yeah, might have been late, but with the way this crew had been late on that false start whistle, there's no way to know for sure. Especially after the previous play.

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