The outrage at the missed pass interference call in last night’s NFC Championship Game does not seem to be fading, even with (or perhaps because of) the looming Super Bowl.
In response to the Saints-Rams controversy, the NFL is apparently going to consider doing something to prevent future officiating issues.
According to Washington Post reporter Mark Maske, the NFL is reportedly considering a measure to make pass interference calls subject to official review and instant replay.
As of now, penalties and pass interference calls are not reviewable.
The NFL will consider making pass interference subject to review by instant replay, sources say…. https://t.co/iSalflIu7L
— MarkMaske (@MarkMaske) January 21, 2019
The play in question involved a hit that Rams defensive back Nickell Robey-Coleman landed a hit on Saints receiver Tommylee Lewis as the ball was thrown his direction on a key third down conversion. The play was incomplete but no flag was thrown.
Fan outrage was immediate with many declaring that the team was robbed. Even Saints head coach Sean Payton fumed over the call.
“For a call like that not to be made, man, it’s just hard to swallow. And then to get a phone call …” Payton said after the game: “We spoke initially, then I called to follow up. And the first thing [head of officials Alberto Riveron] said when I got on the phone — ‘We messed it up.’
“Listen, it’s a hard job for those guys ’cause it’s happening fast. But I don’t know if there was ever a more obvious pass interference call that — here it is, the NFC Championship Game. So, it’s a tough one to swallow.”
The Rams subsequently got a game-tying field goal and forced the game into overtime.
In overtime, the Rams forced an interception of Saints quarterback Drew Brees and soon set up a 57-yard field goal that kicker Greg Zeurlein hit with ease, sending them to their first Super Bowl since 2001.