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NFL: Officials' ruling at end of MNF game was correct

Officials signal a touchdown by Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Golden Tate, obscured, on the last play of Monday's game against the Packers.

Officials signal a touchdown by Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Golden Tate, obscured, on the last play of Monday's game against the Packers.

Obama: NFL needs regular refs

The White House says President Barack Obama believes that a disputed end to the Green Bay Packers-Seattle Seahawks football game means it is time to resolve a labor dispute and get regular referees back to officiating NFL games.

Obama spokesman Jay Carney told reporters aboard Air Force One that the president, an avid sports fan, watched the game and "thinks there was a real problem with that call." Green Bay is in politically important Wisconsin, adding significance to Obama's stance.

Carney called the play "very distressing for every American football fan."

NEW YORK (AP) — The NFL conceded Tuesday that a bad call cost the Green Bay Packers the game while upholding the Seattle Seahawks' victory.

As coaches, players and fans — and even athletes in other sports — ripped the use of replacement refs, the league met with its locked-out officials Tuesday in an attempt to resolve the impasse.

Two people with knowledge of the talks told The Associated Press that the sides were meeting Tuesday. The people spoke on condition of anonymity because the discussions were not made public.

The NFL said Seattle's last-second touchdown pass Monday should not have been overturned — but acknowledged Seahawks receiver Golden Tate should have been called for offensive pass interference before the catch for a 14-12 victory.

The ire around football at the struggles of the replacements had been steadily building this season, and it reached an apex Monday with what everybody had feared would happen: a highly questionable call deciding a game.

On the final play of "Monday Night Football," Russell Wilson heaved a 24-yard pass into a scrum in the end zone with Seattle trailing 12-7. Tate shoved away a defender with both hands, and the NFL acknowledged Tuesday he should have been penalized, which would have clinched a Packers victory. But that cannot be reviewed by instant replay.

Tate and Green Bay safety M.D. Jennings then both got their hands on the ball, though the Packers insisted Jennings had clear possession for a game-ending interception.

"It was pinned to my chest the whole time," Jennings said.

Instead, the officials ruled on the field that the two had simultaneous possession, which counts as a reception. Once that happened, the NFL said, the referee was correct that no indisputable visual evidence existed on review to overturn the touchdown call.

"The NFL Officiating Department reviewed the video today and supports the decision not to overturn the on-field ruling following the instant replay review," the league said in a statement.

Saying there was no indisputable evidence, though, is not the same as confirming the initial call was correct. When the players came down with the ball, television showed one official standing over the pile ruling touchdown, while another next to him did not signal a score.

On his weekly appearance on Seattle radio station 710 KIRO-AM, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll made no apologies Tuesday, saying, "The league backed it up and game over, we win."

"Golden makes an extraordinary effort. It's a great protection; it's a great throw. It's a great attempt at the ball and he wins the battle," he said. "They were right on the point looking right at it, standing right over the thing and they reviewed it. Whether they missed the push or not — obviously they missed the push in the battle for the ball — but that stuff goes on all the time."

The NFL locked out the officials in June after their contract expired. Unable to reach a new collective bargaining agreement, the league opened the season with replacements, most with experience only in lower levels of college football.

Comments

kevin 1 year, 11 months ago

This NFL season is a total bust already. Folks should be thanking Mr. Goodell for all of these problems. Just like he hated the Saints and wanted to destroy them (Goodell wanted Tom Benson to move the team to Ca.) he wants more money for the owners so uses 'rookie" refs this season. No one is making noise about the stolen TD form the Saint son Sunday. The players make a catch, hits the pylon with his foot and at bout the same time, touches out of bounds. That was an obvious TD but was reversed. How could a player's foot hit the ground first if the pylon was knocked down? It had to be the other way around. Guess Las Vagas didn't have a lot of money on that game so it was kept quiet. Yo can also make a case for all the terrible head to head knock outs that took place Sunday and no penalty was ever called. Players had to leave the game. Gee, this sounds more like a new bounty system to me. Where is Goodell at when he wants to look the other way?

Goodell needs to be fired, period.

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