Another week, another marquee game featuring the Seattle Seahawks that ends in controversy. On Sunday night, the New England Patriots made their way to the 1-yard line, facing fourth down with 14 seconds remaining. Tom Brady attempted a fade to Rob Gronkowski, and there was significant contact in the end zone.
Gronkowski, and no doubt millions of Patriots fans, wanted the refs to throw flag for defensive pass interference.
The referees did not throw a flag, and it appears it was the right decision. Both players were jockeying with each other, and after several viewings it’s unclear who is interfering with who, or if it’s enough contact to even consider the play “interference” and not just two players hand fighting with each other.
After the game, Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll explained how they prepared for this very play in practice last week.
The play effectively ended the game. The Seahawks were able to run the ball twice backed up against their goal line to seal a 31-24 win. Brady was furious:
It’s hard not to give the refs the benefit of the doubt in this instance, however. And besides, the Patriots have had plenty of good fortune at the 1-yard line against the Seahawks. There was that play, of course, but also the Seahawks may have gotten robbed earlier in the fourth quarter when it appeared that C.J. Prosise scored a touchdown on a goal line plunge and referees disagreed. The Seahawks settled for a field goal on the drive.
Sorry Patriots fans, your very good football team now looks slightly less good at 7-2 than it would have at 8-1. You poor, poor things.