Bill Belichick Makes Strong Statement on Blown Call in Vikings-Bills Thriller


The NFL’s most respected head coach has taken issue with a blown call in the Minnesota Vikings‘ win over the Buffalo Bills.

Bill Belichick addressed a missed call late in the fourth quarter that set up a game-tying field goal for the Bills, sending the game into overtime.

The Vikings persevered in the 33-30 overtime thriller, however, Belichick’s case could argue the game should have never reached overtime.

 Bill Belichick Takes Issue With Blown Call in Vikings-Bills Thriller

On Monday, November 14, Belichick, the league’s longest-tenured head coach, took the opportunity to address a fourth-quarter catch by Bills wide receiver Gabe Davis that should have been reversed as an incompletion.

The Buffalo receiver secured the ball along the sidelines for a 20-yard catch with 17 seconds left in regulation, but as he fell to the ground, he failed to get his arms under the ball as it bobbled and hit the turf while in his grasp.

Replay officials could have stopped play on the field to determine whether Davis actually completed the catch, but that’s the catch. Only officials, not teams, can review a play inside two minutes of the fourth quarter.

On Sunday, officials declined to stop the play and review it before the Bills, who wisely rushed to the line of scrimmage and snapped the ball, ran another play to negate any chance of the officials considering taking another look.

Belichick addressed his grievances with the rule, saying coaches are missing opportunities to challenge and correct the course of the game.

From ESPN:

“Provided the team has a challenge, they should have the opportunity to challenge really any play. I’m on record on that,” Belichick said in his Monday videoconference.

In a Monday interview on sports radio WEEI, Belichick added: “There have been other examples of that, plays that have occurred in situations where teams couldn’t challenge because the rules prohibited [it].

“I get forward progress, and things like that, that you can’t challenge. I’m not talking about that. I’m saying not having the ability to challenge a play that could impact the outcome of the game — even calls like holding and pass interference and things like that — I don’t see why those plays can’t be reviewed [by a coach’s challenge].”

NFL VP of Officiating Admits Gabe Davis Catch Would be Reversed

After the game, NFL Senior Vice President of Officiating Walt Anderson admitted the play was mishandled by the officials.

He said officials should have stopped to review the play, and said the league will be analyzing video and audio of the crew to determine why it wasn’t. Anderson confirmed that had officials looked at the play, it would have been overturned.

“We were able — several plays after — to look at all the angles,” Anderson told pool reporter Lindsay Jones, per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero. “It would have been reversed to an incomplete pass because he did not maintain control of the ball after he hit the ground and the ball touched the ground out of bounds.”

To Pelissero’s point, the call would have drawn immense backlash had the Bills went on to win in overtime.

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