WATCH: Marques Colston’s Botched Lateral Ends Saints’ Season

New Orleans Saints, Marques Colston, Seattle Seahawks, NFL Playoffs


Nobody really knows what Saints receiver Marques Colston was thinking when he inexplicably threw an illegal forward pass in the waning seconds of New Orleans’ divisional-round playoff loss at Seattle.

Facing a 23-15 deficit with 26 seconds left, the Saints were attempting to put together a last-second touchdown drive to tie the game. With about eight seconds left, Drew Brees connected with Colston at the Seattle 38-yard line.

However, instead of stepping out bounds to give his team one more heave to the end zone, Colston did this:

New Orleans Saints, Marques Colston, Seattle Seahawks, NFL Playoffs

Since Colston was beyond the line of scrimmage and the ball clearly travelled forward, the refs correctly threw the flag for an illegal-forward pass. The penalty resulted in a 10-second run-off, which allowed the clock to expire and sealed a Seahawks victory.

UPDATE, January 14: According to USA Today, Saints head coach Sean Payton said the final lateral was a designed play, not a blunder by Colston.

Here’s what Payton told the media:

We’re probably maybe a play early from [needing to call] it, but with no timeouts. We’d kind of seen something on tape, Marques has got a pretty good arm. You know, hindsight, [it was] a play where he could have caught it, stepped out and then maybe [we throw] a Hail Mary to the end zone. But it was a play we had put in a week and a half ago, prior to this game, which was a deep throw to Marques and then across the field to Cadet. So, yeah, he wasn’t freelancing.”

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