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Officiating video week 3: Explaining the recent ejections and rules for a dropkick kick-off



Senior vice president of officiating Al Riveron released the week three officiating video on Friday (video below).

Unnecessary Roughness

In it he covered a variety of calls from week two that included the ejection of Atlanta Falcons Damontae Kazee for an illegal hit on Panthers quarterback Cam Newton. Kazee hit Newton in the head as Newton was sliding. He was ejected from the game for this hit. We covered this in greater detail in a post earlier in the week.

Unsportsmanlike conduct

A second ejection occurred when LeGarrette Blount was ejected from the Lions-49ers game for coming off the bench and shoving 49ers linebacker Elijah Lee after Lee hit Lions quarterback Matt Stafford as he was running out of bounds. The hit was legal and occurred before Stafford touched the sideline so there was no penalty for a hit on the quarterback out of bounds.

Catch process

Riveron also explained the process of a catch. A receiver in the process of a catch must have control, two feet down and perform a “football act” or have the time to perform a football act. In the example shown, the receiver neither performed a football act nor had the time to perform a football act. In that case, he is a receiver going to the ground. A receiver going to the ground must maintain control through hitting the ground. In the example, the ball came loose when he hit the ground and it was therefore ruled an incomplete pass.

Illegal forward pass

In a scenario in the Texans at Titans game, Titans quarterback Blaine Gabbert threw two forward passes. The first pass was deflected back to him and as he scrambled away from the defender, he tossed another pass out of bounds. Both passes occurred behind the line of scrimmage. After a forward pass has been attempted, the quarterback cannot attempt another forward pass. It is a five yard penalty and no loss of down if the defense accepts the penalty. If they decline the penalty, it goes to the next down in the series.

Defensive holding

Defensive holding occurs when the defender grabs or holds a receiver within five yards of line of scrimmage and before the ball is thrown. The penalty is five yards and an automatic first down.

Dropkick kick off

A dropkick kick-off is treated as the same as kicking off from a tee so the same rules apply until the ball hits the ground a second time. On a dropkick kick-off, the blocking rules are in effect for everyone in the set-up zone. Once the ball hits the ground a second time, then it is a legal live ball.

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