The Washington Redskins were trying to drive down the field to get a win late in the fourth quarter. An unusual mistake made by the officiating crew could have ruined the Redskins chances to win the game.
On second and five from the Washington 41 yard line, Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III threw a short pass to Pierre Garcon who fought for the first down. It looked like he was short and should’ve been ruled a third and one. They could’ve even brought the chains out to measure it. Instead, they signaled it was first down and moved the chains. They even changed the down box to a first down.
Thinking it was first down, the Redskins then threw a pass deep down the middle of the field to tight end Fred Davis for an incompletion. The referees then called the next play fourth and one, when the Redskins and head coach Mike Shanahan thought it was second down.
According to Michaels after the game, Shanahan asked for a measurement from the sideline official who told him he didn’t need one because it was first down. Had they known it was third and one they likely would have called a different play. Shanahan was visibly upset on the side line and Al Michaels calling the game was equally upset.
RECAP: Redskins appeared short on 2nd down. Chains moved to first down. Redskins dropped pass. Refs rule 4th down. pic.twitter.com/5XYji9n3QY
— BuzzFeed Sports (@BuzzFeedSports) December 2, 2013
Here is another angle:
— Cork Gaines (@CorkGaines) December 2, 2013