On Sunday, the Green Bay Packers were robbed of a win when a Clay Matthews hit on Kirk Cousins — which led to what should have been a game-sealing interception — was deemed illegal.
A 15-yard roughing the passer penalty was levied against Matthews, and the Vikings went on to tie the game.
Anyone who has seen the replay of this hit on Cousins — aside from the NFL itself — agrees that what Matthews did was the definition of a form tackle, rather than any kind of penalty.
This includes the past two NFL officiating chiefs, Dean Blandino and Mike Pereira, who both blasted the league’s take.
Former @NFL officiating chiefs @MikePereira and @DeanBlandino issued strong rebuttals today to the league’s emphasis on roughing the QB, especially the two calls in MIN-GB. Relevant transcript: pic.twitter.com/mtnpcepi0Y
— Kevin Seifert (@SeifertESPN) September 17, 2018
Incredibly, not only has the NFL disagreed with that notion, but it has come out and said that it will use that hit, and another hit like it, to teach what is now illegal.
Here's more on the scoop-and-pull technique that falls under the broader "intimidating and punishing acts" outlawed by NFL rules. These are judgment calls, and referee Tony Corrente judged the Clay Matthews and Eric Kendricks hits to be fouls. https://t.co/WjmRIR3NU5
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) September 17, 2018
At this point, the league needs to cut the charade and simply put flags on the quarterback. You cannot hit them high. You cannot hit them low. And now, you cannot hit them right in the chest because you might accidentally fall on them or cause them to leave their feet.