|Statement on last play of Giants-Niners game
The NFL's official statement Monday regarding the final play of the 49ers' 39-38 playoff victory over the Giants on Sunday:
A videotape review by NFL Director of Officiating Mike Pereira
of the final play -- the Giants' 41-yard field goal attempt with six
seconds remaining -- determined the following:
Tam Hopkins, No. 65, of the Giants lined up as the left guard
and was illegally downfield on the pass attempt. The three flags
thrown on this play were for this penalty.
Guard Rich Seubert, No. 69, was an eligible receiver on Giants
field-goal attempts. This was reported to the officiating crew
prior to the game as is routinely done before every game.
49ers defensive end Chike Okeafor interfered with Seubert
downfield when he was attempting to catch Giants holder Matt
Allen's pass. This defensive pass-interference penalty against the
49ers was not called.
If defensive pass interference had been called, there would
have been offsetting penalties (ineligible receiver against the
Giants and pass interference against the 49ers) with the down
replayed at the original line of scrimmage, the San Francisco
23-yard line. Although time had expired, a game cannot end with
offsetting penalties. Thus, the game would have been extended by
one untimed down.
One additional note on the play: Allen did not have the option
of spiking the ball to stop the clock, which only can be done by
taking a hand-to-hand snap directly from the center. If Allen had
spiked the ball, it would have been a penalty for intentionally
grounding the ball and the game would have ended due to a 10-second
runoff of the clock.