NFC Divisional Playoff
We will be live blogging the calls and rules interpretations from the Giants-Packers game.
Bill Leavy is the referee. Full crew list is at the bottom of the post.
Game summary. Penalties: Giants 3 for 30 yards, Packers 3 for 20 yards. Replays: All were in the first quarter. First, the Packers had a fumble overturned to down by contact. Second, a down-by-contact call was not ruled a fumble on a Giants challenge. Then, there was a booth review for the Giants’ Hail Mary touchdown. At halftime, there were two yellow penalty flags and three red challenge flags (metaphorically including the booth challenge).
Game ball this weekend goes to John Parry’s crew in the Saints-49ers game. The entire crew kept calm in a back-and-forth game where one bad call could have changed everything.
Spoke too soon. It looks like Leavy called a roughing-the-passer penalty when he saw the jarring movement of Aaron Rodgers head. This is why a penalty is not called when you see the effects of a perceived helmet hit and not an actually observed helmet hit. That was a bad penalty at a critical juncture.
The crew is atoning for its 1st quarter missed call/missed challenge on the fumble that was ruled down by contact. Good regrouping at halftime, as this crew now looks like the other three officiating crews this weekend.
4th Qtr | 6:53 Ryan Grant fumbled before he was down. Green Bay did not challenge, as it was clear from the replay. Good job by the officials in letting it play out.
3rd Qtr | 3:20 Eli Manning was not guilty of intentional grounding. The pass fell at the feet of Bradshaw, meaning there was a receiver in the area, negating the penalty.
First half summary. Penalties: Giants 1 for 5 yards, Packers 1 for 10 yards. Replay: One challenge by the Giants was upheld on the controversial Jennings non-fumble. One challenge by the Packers overturned a fumble on special teams. The replay booth also called for a review of the Hail Mary touchdown pass at the end of the half, which was confirmed.
1st Qtr | 1:45 Leavy denies the challenge to the Giants on a fumble. Even though the play was allowed to run as if it were a fumble, the on-field ruling was determined to be a fumble.
Although it appears that the ball did come out, Leavy ruled that some part of the runner’s body was down.
Had the Giants won the challenge, they would not have been entitled to the runback.
Regarding the 12 in the huddle play, I didn’t see anything. The Giants already went to the line of scrimmage, and as was ruled in the Giants-Falcons game last weekend, the timeout cannot save you. If, after you’ve broken the huddle, the officials see 12 players exiting the huddle, they may call 12 in the huddle after the fact.
However, if they break the huddle and make a substitution, the defense is allowed to make a reactionary substitution.
1st Qtr | 13:45 The Giants may have gotten away with 12 men in the huddle on a 3rd & 8 play. The broadcast did not show the huddle up, so New York may have been running a no-huddle. Eli took the timeout so that they didn’t run the play with 12 men on the field.
1st qtr | 8:24 A fumble recovery by the Giants will be overturned on replay. The Packers returner had a knee down and then an elbow before the ball came loose. Down by contact at the 20.
1st qtr | 12:15. Good spot (veteran head linesman George Hayward) on the reception by Victor Cruz as a first down. He was down a yard short of the first-down line, then got up and got the first down. Cruz was not down by contact, because contact came before he caught the ball
Bill Leavy has three other members of his seven-man crew. As for the other three: two are likely assigned to the conference championship game and one is a rookie and, therefore, ineligible for a postseason assignment.
Field judge Jim Quirk is officiating in his first season of postseason eligibility.
- R — #127 Bill Leavy (17th year, 11th as referee)
- U — #44 Jeff Rice (10th year)*
- HL — #54 George Hayward (21st year)
- LJ — #9 Mark Perlman (11th year)
- FJ — #63 Jim Quirk (2nd year)
- SJ — #128 Larry Rose (15th year)*
- BJ — #93 Scott Helverson (9th year)*
*Rice is substituting from Jeff Triplette’s crew. Rose and Helverson are substituting from Scott Green’s crew. (Leavy’s side judge is a rookie, and therefore ineligible for a postseason assignment.)