The San Diego Chargers blew a 21-point lead on Monday Night Football and lost to the Houston Texans. The soft defense in the second half holds most of the blame for that but now the team can add the officiating crew to the list of reasons why they lost.
NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino said on NFL Network that the unnecessary roughness penalty that Chargers’ Cam Thomas drew on a crucial play was wrong.
No, this was not a correct call. This is not the intent of the rule as it was written,” Blandino explained. “The rule is to protect the snapper on a field goal or extra point from a direct forcible blow to the head or neck area, or with the crown/forehead/hairline parts of the helmet to the body. It was not designed to prohibit any contact with the snapper, which is what happened on this play
The incorrect call cost the Chargers the game. The foul gave the Texans a fresh set of downs they didn’t even need. Matt Schaub threw a touchdown the very next play to cut the Chargers’ lead to 28-21. The Chargers lost 31-28.
This is not the first time a referee has had a direct effect on an outcome to a game and it won’t be the last. It wasn’t the referees who gave up 24 unanswered points. Even if the erroneous call isn’t made, the defense still would of given up 20 unanswered points. Those are the mistakes that will keep a team far away from the playoffs.