Another game in the NFL, another questionable roughing-the-passer penalty call by an officiating crew.
Just a day after referees in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 21-15 win over the Atlanta Falcons were criticized for punishing Grady Jarrett’s sack on Tom Bradysimilar questions were asked after Monday Night Football and the dramatic 30-29 victory of the Kansas City Chiefs over the Las Vegas Raiders.
Late in the first half, Chiefs defensive lineman Chris Jones sacked Raiders quarterback Derek Carr, tackling Carr and landing on top of him while also stripping the ball from him.
Despite it looking like a clean streak bag, head referee Carl Cheffers threw his flag, penalizing Jones for roughing-the-passer to the confusion of the fans at Arrowhead Stadium and everyone watching at home.
“The quarterback is in the pocket and he’s in a passing stance,” Cheffers explained in the postgame pool report. “He gets full protection from all aspects of what we give the quarterback in a passing stance. So, when he was tackled, my verdict was that the defender landed on him with full body weight. The quarterback is protected from being tackled with full body weight. My ruling roughed up the passerby for that.”
When asked if the ball coming loose from Carr’s hands changes the penalty, Cheffers said: “No, because he still gets pass protection until he can defend himself.
“So when he’s in a passing stance and actually tries to make a pass, he’s going to get full protection until the time he can actually protect himself. The fact that the ball went out and was later recovered by the defense is irrelevant to the protection the quarterback receives.”
Jones said after the game that he believes these penalties should be able to be reviewed.
“It happened so fast,” Jones said. “You know, it looked like that at first, but when you actually watch it through the video and slow it down, you see that I kind of pulled away.
“And the referee may have just seen a big 300-pound man land on him [Carr] and i get it. I’m not saying that the referee is wrong, but I’m just saying that those situations can affect the game a lot, especially, in the finals, a critical situation like that, a game-changing game, it can affect the whole game. Pardon my language, but we just have to take initiative as a league and see what we can do better.”
The penalty allowed the Raiders to continue their drive, ending in a Daniel Carlsen field goal as they extended their lead to 20-7 before halftime.
The evening did not end well for Las Vegas however, as they blew a lead that ballooned to a total of 17 to their division rivals as they suffered their fourth defeat of the season.
After what was a frustrating evening for the Raiders, star wide receiver Davante Adams pushed over a cameraman as he left the field, something he later apologized for.
After the game, Adams — who joined the Raiders in the offseason after being traded from the Packers — addressed the incident when he spoke to the media.
“Before I say anything, I want to apologize to the guy running off the field and he ran and jumped in front of me,” Adams. said.
“I come from the field and I hit him and pushed him. I think he ended up on the ground so I want to forgive him because it was just frustration mixed with him running in front of me and I shouldn’t have responded like that and that’s how I responded at first. I want to apologize to him for that.”
Adams himself had another great evening on the field, finishing with 124 receiving yards, two touchdowns and multiple pass interference calls against Kansas City as he tormented the defensive backs.
But, despite leading 17-0 in the second quarter, when facing Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs, no lead is safe.
Mahomes threw four touchdowns — all to tight end Travis Kelce — as Kansas City produced a remarkable comeback and showcased its potential Super Bowl credentials.
Kelce finished with an extraordinary stat line, with seven catches, 25 receiving yards and 24 points with the four touchdowns – a career high for touchdowns for the 33-year-old.
“I just worked my tail off for these guys and ran tonight,” Kelce said ESPN’s Lisa Salters after the game. “That’s all I did [Chiefs] Kingdom They showed up, showed up on Monday night, knowing that everyone has work tomorrow and they were here loud and proud.”