Did a lack of a big-screen HD picture for a replay review affect the Jaguars' chances to win Sunday in Cleveland?
Jack Del Rio thinks so.
A pass interference penalty against Dawan Landry that helped position the Browns for a touchdown should have been overturned because the pass involved was tipped at the line of scrimmage.
I saw it clearly on a middle-sized TV on the wall of the press box at the Georgia Dome.
Referee Terry McAulay did not have such a luxury, apparently, inside his sideline booth at Cleveland Browns Stadium.
Here’s McAulay from a pool report by Tony Grossi of the Cleveland Plain Dealer: “We had no definitive shot of it being touched by the player. There was a fuzzy shot that was possible, but then all of the other shots we had just couldn’t prove it and we have to see the ball touched by a hand before we can do anything with it.”
A fuzzy shot?
I’m going to side with Del Rio on this. A fuzzy shot should not be something that is in the way of a call being fixed when you and I are seeing a play clearly.
“…When they went under the booth they said it wasn’t conclusive enough to change it,” Del Rio said in his postgame comments. “Can’t imagine it wouldn’t have been. Maybe that’s just another reason they should have somebody upstairs seeing the same high definition that you’re looking at. Evidently, they missed the call.
“The screen he looked at, the small screen down below, for some reason the league wants to keep the referees looking in that little screen when you’ve got guys upstairs looking at 50-inch (screens). I don’t quite understand it, but that’s the way it’s ruled, that’s the way it’s handled. So you force the referee to go in and look at this small screen. Evidently, he didn’t see enough to be certain.”
If the play had been ruled as it should have been, the Browns would have faced third-and-goal from the Jaguars’ 7-yard line. If the Jaguars held for one play, Cleveland likely would have kicked a field goal and it could have made a huge difference in what wound up a 14-10 Browns win.
Instead the Browns got a first-and-goal from the 1. Chris Ogbonnaya gained nothing on his first try, then got in on his second try to make it 7-7 at 3:25 of the second quarter.
I expect the league will apologize to the Jaguars, which won’t help a bit.