WATCH: Crucial Missed Call Ends Saints Season

Saints Rams missed call

In the play heard round the world during the NFC Championship Game, the Rams’ Nickell Robey-Coleman tackled the Saints’ Tommylee Lewis in a hit that many commentators and fans believed should have been a penalty flag, specifically on pass interference.

As a direct result of that play, the Rams secured an overtime game, with a field goal kick in the last minute of the fourth quarter.

You can watch the play for yourself below:

Immediately following the controversial decision by the ref to not throw a penalty flag, Twitter users took to the platform to condemn the move.

Anchor Chris Gailus tweeted, “Not sure I’ve ever seen a more blatant last-minute pass interference penalty that was TOTALLY MISSED by the refs. How does that happen? Look where the football is.

NFL writer John Breech wrote, “That was so bad Sean Payton should be allowed to throw his challenge flag and have it count as a penalty flag

Even some NFL veterans threw their opinions into the ring, with Terrell Owens tweeting, “Terrible officiating. Game should be over. The should be livid. 2 obvious pass interference calls missed.”

Vincent Bonsignore, an NFL beat writer specializing on the Rams, wrote, “Four penalties for the , zero for the . A big thing was made about how have not won a game refereed by Bill Vinovich. They are 0-8 with him refereeing their games since 2012.”

Here’s what Saints head coach Sean Payton had to say:

Sean Payton: The Saints Will ‘Probably Never Get Over’ The Missed Call

Following the game, with his team’s Super Bowl dreams dashed, Payton told reporters that the NFL’s head of officials had confirmed to him it was a mistake to not make a call on the play.

Per ESPN, Payton said, “For a call like that not to be made, man, it’s just hard to swallow. And then to get a phone call … We spoke initially, then I called to follow up. And the first thing [head of officials Alberto Riveron] said when I got on the phone — ‘We messed it up.’

Payton continued, “Listen, it’s a hard job for those guys ’cause it’s happening fast. But I don’t know if there was ever a more obvious pass interference call that — here it is, the NFC Championship Game. So, it’s a tough one to swallow.”

As for the Rams, some players seemed perfectly fine poking fun at the controversial call (or lack thereof): Todd Gurley took to Instagram following the game to post what appeared to be a photoshopped picture of he and a ref standing side by side, with the ref holding a “Gurley” jersey and he holding a ref uniform. You can see the picture below:

View this post on Instagram

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A post shared by Todd Gurley (@tg4hunnid) on Jan 20, 2019 at 4:52pm PST

Meanwhile, Rams head coach Sean McVay didn’t see anything wrong with the missed call. To reporters following the game, McVay said via USA Today,

“I thought it was a bang-bang type play. The one thing I respect about the refs today is that they let the guys compete and they let the guys play. I thought Nickell Robey made a nice play. They snapped it on a quick snap, had a little wheel route coming out of the backfield. Thought it was a competitive type play. Certainly I’m not going to complain about the way that was officiated. I thought that it was a competitive play.”

 

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