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Fantasy Intelligence Report — Special Calvin Edition

Calling Michael Weston. 

Yes, that’s right. I think the NFL is going to need to hire
Burn Notice’s famous spy to uncover who is truly behind the blown call from Sunday’s game between the Detroit Lions and Chicago Bears. Then again, maybe while Michael is at it he may want to examine Carl Johnson and Mike Pereira’s heads as well with a … well, I won’t go there. 

First off, I have to say that this “judgment” call was indeed worse than the one that came via Ed Hochuli in 2008. Why?

Well, it’s quite simple really. The call on the field was a touchdown by the zebra closest to the play itself. Then, with little Vinny in his ear, another zebra came over and insisted on having a wild horse chat with his buddies, which is proper etiquette according to the NFL rulebook.

The original call on the field was then inexplicitly overturned before it was challenged with authority by head coach Jim Schwartz (well technically the booth challenged it). What I don’t understand is why it was overturned in the first place. If the call on the field was made and the player celebrates there should be no going back on it, especially because it was zebra numero uno’s signal to make as he was closest to the play.

Secondly, there has been all this talk about how it’s in the rules, and if Pereira says it’s the right call, then it must be just that. 

Survey says: X, X and X. 

The rule that everyone is referencing to states the following …

“If a player goes to the ground in the act of catching a pass (with or without contact by an opponent), he must maintain control of the ball after he touches the ground, whether in the field of play or the end zone. If he loses control of the ball, and the ball touches the ground before he regains control, the pass is incomplete.
If he regains control prior to the ball touching the ground, the pass is complete.”

The proper interpretation of the play would’ve included the fact that when Johnson went up for the pass he was “in the act of catching,” but when he hit two feet down, plus his backside and elbow with no ball movement he showed that he had completed the act of “control,” therefore the rule is completely irrelevant to the actual play itself.

Furthermore, come to find out, Note 3 (the note being ignored) of Article 7 clearly states: “If a player has control of the ball, a slight movement of the ball will not be considered loss of possession. He must lose control of the ball in order to rule that there has been a loss of possession.” 

There is no bad rule here like everyone wants to believe. This was just a classic case of horrendous interpretation of the rule by the referees, and a lack of properly evaluating all the notes of the actual rule, kind of like a guitar player does at a rock concert.

Besides, Rule 11, Section 2, Article 1 (e) clearly states a touchdown is scored when: the referee awards a touchdown to a team that has been denied one by a palpably unfair act, something that head referee Gene Steratore should’ve taken in to consideration upon further review. 

The bottom line here is that there is no way to change the outcome. However, instead as quoted in a recent
ESPN.com article, NFL vice president of officiating Carl Johnson has taken the route of arrogant jerk by saying, “I was watching it here in the command center, and am proud of the way our guys handled it. Now we can further educate the fans and media on what the proper requirements are for a catch.”

Really Carl?  Last time I checked, 95 percent of the NFL world stands on one proper side, while you, the roaring Bears fans of Chicago, your herd of zebras and that bonehead Pereira – whom, by the way conveniently retired after his group of referees recorded their worst season of efficiency ever back in 2008 (remember Hochuli) – all stand on the other, completely out of control and lacking common sense.  

My fantasy advice for the week ahead:
Pick up Mark Clayton in points per reception leagues, consider stashing John Kuhn on your bench in touchdown only leagues, and find a creative way to get rid of Alex Smith. 

Thanks for reading! Good luck in Week 2.

Eric Huber is a staff writer for Fantasysharks.com.

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