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Week 1

Week 1 remainders: League says clock runoff was okay

Some leftover items on Week 1




Here are a few leftover items from Week 1:

No clock issue in New Orleans. As we mentioned in the Sunday live coverage, an inordinate amount of time ran off the clock following an own-fumble recovery by the Saints further downfield. The Saints were allowed to gain the extra yardage, as the restrictions on forward fumbles only apply after the two-minute warning, on fourth down, or any time the ball goes out of bounds. The clock ran off more than 75 seconds between plays when the Saints called timeout leading to the nonverbal exchange seen above between referee John Parry and Saints coach Sean Payton. The time consumed seemed to be quite excessive, even if the officials gave a courtesy reset of the play clock to 25. (This reset happens when there are unusual circumstances between the down that should not penalize the offense.) We requested clarification on the clock issue, and NFL spokesman Michael Signora replied, “The 40-second clock was reset at some point in this sequence without the game clock being stopped. That happens from time to time for a variety of different reasons.”

Twerking for a living. Antonio Brown’s touchdown celebration (video) in the third quarter of the Monday put the Steelers up 18 points over Washington, but 15 yards back on the kickoff. Brown drew an unsportsmanlike conduct foul for his twerking in the end zone, which is covered in the rules under “sexually suggestive gestures [and] prolonged gyrations.” Although the league has a problem with these types of celebrations from an image standpoint, they have no problem with the ad revenue generated from the video posted on their site.

Edelman fined for helmet hit. In addition to the fines handed out for the helmet hits in Thursday’s game, Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman was fined $26,000 for a helmet-to-helmet hit in the Sunday night game against the Cardinals. Edelman was not penalized by Tony Corrente’s crew. The hit most that most likely drew the fine:

However …

Panthers lineman fined for taunting. Panthers offensive lineman Trai Turner was assessed a taunting foul, which comes with a $9,115 fine.

Donald did not get a 2 & DQ. As we said on our podcast (below), the ejection of defensive tackle Aaron Donald of the Rams was not a case of him accruing two fouls, but rather for contact with an official (video). It appears that Douglas pushed off slightly on an official who was trying to maintain order. This is enough to trigger an ejection on its own. The roughness penalty that Douglas also was flagged for could not be used under the new rule to create an automatic ejection for two offenses, since it is not unsportsmanlike conduct — and, at that, only certain offenses — that are applicable. Donald is not expected to be suspended. Also to note, any foul against an official is assessed between downs, meaning both the personal foul and the disqualification foul are marked off. [Update 9/16: Donald has been fined $21,269.]




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)

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