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Giants interception correctly goes to the spot of recovery, not spot of whistle



Week 2: Giants at Cowboys

The amazing interception by the Giants’ Kenny Phillips off of the foot of Cowboys’ Jason Witten (video) could be the first use of what might be referred to as the “Ed Hochuli rule.”

You may remember last year’s botched call in the Chargers–Broncos game where an incomplete pass ruling could not be overruled as a turnover.

In this weekend’s Sunday Night Football game, the ruling was incomplete. However, in a Rockette-worthy display, it actually caromed of the shoe of Witten into the waiting hands of Phillips. Phillips then trotted to the end zone untouched, although whistles did not blow until he was at the 5-yard line.

Mike Carey overturned the incomplete ruling on replay, but the ball in these situations, even if there is a delayed whistle, will go back to the spot of recovery. Even in the absence of the whistle, the covering official signaled incomplete, which is equivalent to a whistle.

And, yet, I find that this was not the most discussed pick in the game, but this was.

On a side note, there was to be no doubt if a punted ball banged off of the video screen with NBC’s cameras making sure that they showed the 600-ton hovering HDTV on all punts. Annoyingly, I might add.

Ben Austro is the editor and founder of Football Zebras and the author of So You Think You Know Football?: The Armchair Ref's Guide to the Official Rules (on sale now)