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To flag or not to flag? Pereira and Daopoulos try to answer the question

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Pereira and Daopoulos break down Super Bowl XLVII

SB47_chromeDid the Baltimore Ravens Jimmy Smith hold the San Francisco 49ers Michael Crabtree on that last gasp fourth and goal?   Did Crabtree push-off of Smith?   Were the officials correct in not throwing a flag on either player?   Two former NFL officials and officiating supervisors are of two different schools of thought on play in question.

Former NFL official, officiating supervisor and current NBC Sports Network officiating analyst Jim Daopoulos broke down three plays in the Super Bowl (video).   Daopoulos says the officials should have thrown a holding flag on Jimmy Smith on the fourth down play.   Daopoulos says, “The competition committee has made it a point of emphasis to allow receivers to run their routes unimpeded.”   With that point of emphasis in mind, Daopoulos concludes that the officials should have flagged the Ravens for defensive holding.   Former vice president for officiating and current Fox Sports officiating analyst Mike Pereira has a different opinion.   Pereira says “Smith had a quick grab and Crabtree had a quick push-off.”   He adds that in real-time he didn’t see a foul; it was only after slow-motion replay did he see the grab and push-off.   In his column, Pereira says he would not want to see a flag on that play if he were still in charge of the officiating.

Both Pereira and Daopoulos are in agreement that the Ravens Carey Williams should have been ejected for shoving head linesman Steve Stelljes (video).   This has been a growing concern for me, and Pereira predicts that the competition committee will issue a point of emphasis to the teams next season to clean up the dead ball shoving and taunting and direct the officials to flag such actions.   Daopoulos adds, “No matter if it’s a pre-season game or the Super Bowl, if (a player) contact(s) an official, you must eject that player.”

During his Pro Football Talk appearance, Daopoulos also discussed the missed holding calls in the end zone when the Ravens took an intentional safety out of punt formation.   Daopoulos says the holding fouls prevented the 49ers’ defenders from forcing the punter out of the end zone sooner.   The Ravens were going to take a safety no matter what, so committing a holding foul in the end zone did not hinder their game strategy.   What was more important to the Ravens on that play was to bleed off as much time as possible.   Daopoulos says he hopes the competition committee takes a look at this and other situations where teams gain an advantage by committing a foul.

Here’s hoping Pereira and Daopoulos share their officiating opinions with NFL fans in 2013!

Mark Schultz is a high school football official, freelance writer and journalist. He first became interested in officiating when he was six years old, was watching a NFL game with his father and asked the fateful question, "Dad, what are those guys in the striped shirts doing?"

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