Peter King’s Monday column always had a lot of great tidbits — and today’s does not disappoint. Always worth a read so check it out in its entirety here if you haven’t already.
On Victor Cruz’s second TD catch, King notes the following:
I don’t know what a catch is anymore. I’ve watched and listened to the NFL explain how three things have to happen for a catch to be valid. One: Firm grip and control of the ball must be established; and if the receiver goes to the ground, he must maintain control. Two: The receiver must have two feet down, or one foot and another body part like an elbow or shoulder. Three: The receiver must make a football move, or turn upfield with the ball. That changes around the goal line, however, which is where the problem came into play Sunday. Wide receiver Victor Cruz of the Giants leaped for a ball with two Eagle defenders near him. Cruz caught it in the heavy traffic and reached for the end zone, and either as he pierced the goal line or just after that, the ball came loose and it fell to the ground in the end zone. The play was ruled a touchdown on the field and upheld by referee Jeff Triplette. I’m told Triplette made the right call according to the rules, which say a catch at the goal line need only pierce the goal line; if, after that, the ball is dropped or the act not completed ion some other way, it doesn’t matter.
It’s confusing as hell, even Victor Cruz told King after the game “Yeah, I still get confused by that rule.” And why shouldn’t he? Look I’m not complaining, but if you catch it at the half yard line and break the plane while losing the ball it shouldn’t count anymore than catching it with both feet down IN the end zone, should it? Leaning the ball over an imaginary plane and losing possession of the ball is somehow better than doing it 5 yards further down the field in the fatter part of the end zone? Seems kinda weird to me, but I’ll take the TD nonetheless.
On the Michael Vick no-call that bruised his hand:
I thought there was one call Vick should have gotten — a high hit from Chris Canty that may have caused his broken hand. By the letter of the rule, he was hit high, after the release. But the problem with Vick is that often he’s hit as a runner, not as a passer, and the rules are different. A quarterback in the pocket is treated altogether differently than a runner who’s left the pocket. And many of the hits Vick takes come after he takes off running.
I don’t think he should have gotten the call at all. Eli took a shot at the beginning of the game with the same timing between release and contact. I have absolutely no problem with contact coming as part of continuation in the moments after a QB throws the ball. Vick said of the play yesterday:
“At some point something catastrophic is gonna happen. Not to blame the refs, but more precautions should be taken. I’m on the ground all the time in the pocket. I don’t know why I don’t get the 15-yard flag like everybody else does. I’m not trying to blame the refs. I just want them to take notice.”
He has since backed away from the statements… for good reason. Whether he knew it or not, Vick was attempting to make the game worse out of frustration for getting beat and hit cleanly. He wants MORE officiating in football right now? PLEASE.
How is a player mid-tackle supposed to pull up in that instance? They can’t… and it will ruin the game if a defensive lineman can’t rush the passer to their full potential out of fear of the refs tacking on a 15 yard penalty. Football is football, not a philosophical debate by microscope light. Let em play! Good no call ref.
Vick, keep crying.