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NFL World Reacts To Controversial Penalty On Cowboys

Dallas Cowboys helmet on the field.

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA - SEPTEMBER 29: A Dallas Cowboys helmet is pictured during a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes Benz Superdome on September 29, 2019 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

Preseason games don't count, but fans are already getting into mid-season form by complaining about questionable calls.

The Dallas Cowboys got called for a whopping 17 penalties during Saturday's 17-7 loss to the Denver Broncos. Many fans didn't agree with one of them.

Officials called Cowboys defensive end Sam Williams for roughing the passer. While he dropped his helmet, the rookie avoided Brett Rypien's head and didn't appear to slam him to the ground.

There are probably better things to do than argue about a call from an exhibition contest, but fans have waited months to bicker over NFL officiating.

Penalties were a major problem for the Cowboys, who drew an NFL-high 127 flags last season and 14 more during their opening-round playoff loss to the San Francisco 49ers.

Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy shouldn't fault the second-round selection for this penalty. However, he said after the game, via team reporter Rob Phillips, that their 17 penalties were "way too much."

"This is preseason. I don't think this has anything to do with last year," McCarthy said. "But I didn't like the number of penalties. I made it clear. I talked about it at halftime and I talked about it briefly in there (the locker room). We'll take a long look at it."

Roughing the passer calls have long proved a source of contention. The league wants to protect quarterbacks, but many fans feel they have made it difficult for defenders to effectively do their jobs.

This certainly won't be the last time viewers get angry about a roughing penalty this year.