By now, everyone from NFL headquarters on down knows the officiating crew made a huge mistake on the infamous “no-call” play in the NFC championship game.
The only thing that can further illuminate the crucial error is just how bad the play looked from other angles.
The CBS camera angles were definitive enough to show that Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman clearly interfered with Saints receiver Tommylee Lewis before the pass arrived.
— Bovada Official (@BovadaOfficial) January 20, 2019
A couple of fan videos that surfaced Monday on Twitter show different angles of the play.
— Couch Guy Sports (@CouchGuySports) January 21, 2019
— Tim McDonough (@mcdonough23) January 21, 2019
In both angles, it is interesting to see how far Robey-Coleman ran to close on Lewis. He was running full speed and led with his helmet, which also could have been called for a penalty on the play. The angles also illustrate Robey-Coleman arrived well before the ball.
The videos also clearly show referees just a few yards away on either side of Robey-Coleman and Lewis, watching the play.
And the videos captured Saints fans complaining in disbelief that there was no flag.
Had officials called pass interference, the Saints could have run down the clock before attempting a very short game-winning field-goal attempt. Instead, they kicked a field goal, and the Rams marched down the field and sent it into overtime on a Greg Zuerlein 48-yarder. Zuerlein then kicked the winner in OT from 57 yards to send the Rams to Super Bowl 53 against the Patriots.
After the game, Saints coach Sean Payton said the NFL told him the officiating crew missed the call. After seeing a replay on a reporter’s phone, Robey-Coleman admitted, “Oh, hell yeah — that was P.I.”