After the Detroit Lions scored another touchdown to take a 14-7 lead over the New Orleans Saints, the Saints began again marching right down the football field. The Saints easily crossed midfield again after Drew Brees hit running back Pierre Thomas for a 14-yard gain on a short pass, but then the Saints fumbled the ball away again. Brees dropped back to pass and as he cocked back to throw, Willie Young knocked the ball out of Brees hand right before it went forward.
As you can see, it's clearly a fumble and it's clear the Lions recover the ball. The referees blew the whistle as the Lions were picking up what should have been an easy return for a touchdown to put the them up 21-7, but because of the whistle they could not advance the football.
Former director of officiating Mike Pereira explains:
That is a fumble. You ignore the whistle in pass/fumble rulings. Ball goes to the recovering team.— Mike Pereira (@MikePereira) January 8, 2012
Check out the complete 2012 NFL playoffs schedule. For more on the Saints and their trip to the playoffs, check out SB Nation's Canal Street Chronicles. For more on the Lions and their first playoff appearance in over a decade visit Pride of Detroit.