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Quick calls: Week 3 liveblog

Keep checking here for rolling coverage throughout the day on Sunday. If you see anything confusing, unusual, or controversial, please let us know.


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7 thoughts on “Quick calls: Week 3 liveblog

  1. Quick update from the NFL: sacking the QB will now be considered illegal. Tapes will be released to each team showing how to avoid this dangerous act.

  2. Fred JW deal withit. It is part of the game. I could complain that every time the BENGALS GET JOHN PERRY THEY LOSE BUT I DO NOT

  3. I hate the Packers, but that Clay Matthews call was absolutely ridiculous. How the hell can you “rough” a “passer” who never passes? That’s called sacking the passer, and has been a legal part of the game since Dorais was hooking up with Rockne. I very much understand wanting to protect players and reduce concussions and other injuries, but this is the NFL taking it to the point of making nonsense of the game itself. Why does this league and its officials seem continuously unable to make reasonable sense out of their own rules?

  4. Hi Ben,

    My reading of this rule seems to imply no protection for a quarterback who does not attempt a pass. My first question is about Article 9 in general: Is a quarterback who does not a attempt a pass a passer? If not, Article 9 offers no protection. My second question is about 9(b) specifically. Is a quarterback in a “defensless posture” before he attempts a pass? The rulebook specifically uses “during the pass” and “after the pass” as the only two examples of a defenseless posture passer. This makes sense when considering the quarterback’s outstretched arm and exposed midsection as the moments to prohibit driving the quarterback into the ground with your weight. How then can Rule 12, Section 2, Article 9(b) be applied by the NFL in the Clay Matthews tackle of Alex Smith if Smith was not in a defenseless posture. I’ve included the rules in question for your convenience. Thank you!


    Because the act of passing often puts the quarterback (or any other player attempting a pass) in a position where he is particularly vulnerable to injury, special rules against roughing the passer apply. The Referee has principal responsibility for enforcing these rules. Any physical acts against a player who is in a passing posture (i.e. before, during, or after a pass) which, in the Referee’s judgment, are unwarranted by the circumstances of the play will be called as fouls. The Referee will be guided by the following principles:

    Roughing will be called if, in the Referee’s judgment, a pass rusher clearly should have known that the ball had already left the passer’s hand before contact was made; pass rushers are responsible for being aware of the position of the ball in passing situations; the Referee will use the release of the ball from the passer’s hand as his guideline that the passer is now fully protected; once a pass has been released by a passer, a rushing defender may make direct contact with the passer only up through the rusher’s first step after such release (prior to second step hitting the ground); thereafter the rusher must be making an attempt to avoid contact and must not continue to “drive through” or otherwise forcibly contact the passer; incidental or inadvertent contact by a player who is easing up or being blocked into the passer will not be considered significant.
    A rushing defender is prohibited from committing such intimidating and punishing acts as “stuffing” a passer into the ground or unnecessarily wrestling or driving him down after the passer has thrown the ball, even if the rusher makes his initial contact with the passer within the one-step limitation provided for in (a) above. When tackling a passer who is in a defenseless posture (e.g., during or just after throwing a pass), a defensive player must not unnecessarily or violently throw him down or land on top of him with all or most of the defender’s weight. Instead, the defensive player must strive to wrap up the passer with the defensive player’s arms and not land on the passer with all or most of his body weight.

  5. Cheffers crew miss the horsecollar tackle, that was made on Cowboys wide receiver Tavon Austin, in the Cowboys-Seahawks game

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