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NFL Competition Committee finalizes pass interference replay rule

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Details on how the new rule can be applied...

NFC Championship - Los Angeles Rams v New Orleans Saints Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The NFL Competition Committee hasth spoken! Their ruling? Pass interference will now be reviewed by instant replay. There’s more to it of course, including restricting the time frame when those reviews can occur.

“... pass interference reviews after the two-minute warning of each half and during overtime will be initiated by the replay official. The replay official will only stop the game when there is “clear and obvious visual evidence” that a pass interference penalty may or may not have occurred.

In an effort to limit excessive stoppages, any stoppage will occur under stricter criteria than other reviewable plays. Calls will only be reversed based on “clear and obvious visual evidence” that an incorrect call was made, which is the same standard for all reviews.” - Logan Reardon, NFL.com

This includes hail mary passes, which could get messy, but there are “stricter guidelines” for this rule. At least that’s what the Competition Committee is telling us:

“The rationale for the stricter criteria is to prevent excessive game clock stoppages for a foul that involves a greater degree of subjectivity than other reviewable plays. Accordingly, the Replay Official will stop the game when there is clear and obvious visual evidence that a pass interference foul may or may not have occurred, based on viewing the play live or any initial available line feed views.”

For now, the rule is only in place for the 2019 NFL Season. I would bet on it being extended beyond that. Furthermore, a flag does not have to be thrown to review the play, broadening the scenarios in which a replay can be triggered.

I don’t have to tell you how this rule proposal got kicked off, but if you happened to miss the NFC Championship Game, here’s what happened.

The costly no-call would help propel to the Los Angeles Rams to the Super Bowl while the New Orleans Saints were left to deal with the fall out. In his post-game press conference, some of the first words Sean Payton spoke were, “just getting off the phone with the league office. They blew the call.”

It’s true, they did blow the call. It won’t reverse history though, despite the lawsuit from “Who Dat Nation”.

“U.S. District Judge Susie Morgan rejected the ticket-holders’ pursuit of a court order to force NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to investigate the blown call in the NFC title game and then make a decision on whether to rewind the game clock...

Morgan wasn’t buying the plaintiffs’ claim, regardless. In her 17-page ruling, she found that Saints ticket-holders and fans have no right to compel the NFL or Goodell to do anything.” - John Simerman, The Advocate

With the new rule setting the groundwork, there’s only one thing left for Philadelphia Eagles’ fans to do. File a lawsuit to overturn the wrongful offensive pass interference called on Dallas Goedert 75-yard game-tying touchdown in Week 14 against the Dallas Cowboys.

We’ll see you in court, Mr. Goodell (we won’t).