NFL Vice President of Officiating Dean Blandino on NFL GameDay Final on NFL Network

NFL Vice President of Officiating Dean Blandino on NFL GameDay Final on NFL Network

On the official’s overturn of Dez Bryant’s catch on 4th and 2 after review:

“This is very similar to the Calvin Johnson play where Bryant is going to the ground to make the catch and the rule is pretty clear that when you go to the ground to make the catch you have to hold on to it throughout that entire process. When Dez hits the ground with his left arm the ball hits the ground it pops loose into the air and that is all part of the catch process that makes it an incomplete pass.”

On whether or not Dez Bryant reaching for the goal line could have been considered a football act:

“Yeah, absolutely. We looked at that aspect of it and in order for it to be a football move, it’s got to be more obvious than that, reaching the ball out with both hands, extending it for the goal line. This is all part of in our view, all part of his momentum in going to the ground and he lost the ball when he hit the ground. That in our view made it incomplete and we feel like it’s a consistent application of the rule as it has been written over the last couple of years.”

On why this is a rule and why is the rule written this way:

“I think that’s a fair point. I think people look at that and they say that is a catch but I think it is about consistency and it’s about, ok if we make that a catch then we’ve got to look at all these other plays where receivers go to the ground and where do we draw the line? Currently we have a line where control, both feet and then do something with it. If we make this a catch, then where do we draw the line with a lot of other plays where it’s clearly incomplete by rule and it can become even more inconsistent. It’s something that we’ll review with the Competition Committee – we review every year. I understand that people are upset. It looks like a catch and I don’t think that’s that far-fetched, but it’s something in order to be consistent we have to draw the line somewhere and that’s where the current line is.”

On why Dez Bryant wasn’t marked down where his elbow went down:

“Because he is not a runner yet. He has not established possession. A runner who’s established possession, absolutely. The minute his elbow hits, the minute the knee hits, he’s down by contact. Here, he’s still a receiver attempting to catch the pass so it’s treated differently and the moment that elbow hits the ball hits the ground as well and it pops up so that’s the application of the rule that was done here. He’s not a runner – he’s a receiver trying to gain possession.”

On why the Josh Cribbs call was reversed:

“It’s a little bit different. The ruling on the field was a fumble. So they ruled that he had possession and it can’t be a fumble because you can see that his knee was down, his arm was down before the ball came loose. The only thing that it could have been was a muff if he never gained possession of the football. In looking at it he had control, both feet down, he was hit and got knocked backwards, and then the knee hit the ground so it really can’t be a fumble based on how it was explained during the broadcast. The officials ruled that he had possession of it, there wasn’t indisputable evidence that he didn’t have possession of it, and the knee was clearly down before he lost it so that’s why that was reversed to down by contact.”

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