Dec 29, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; San Francisco 49ers punter Andy Lee (4) against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

San Francisco 49ers’ Andy Lee’s ankle gets rolled up after punting to Seahawks (GIF)


This game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Seattle Seahawks has been intense ever since the fans first arrived to fill the stadium. These two teams never hold anything back whenever they step on the field, especially when they’re matched up against each other.

There have been a couple questionable calls and no calls during today’s game, but that happens during every football game that’s played. Officials will miss calls or decide to roll with a different decision. Now just a little bit ago, San Francisco 49ers punter Andy Lee sent a ball down the field after his offense went three and out.

After drilling the ball down field, a diving Chris Maragos attempted to block the punt but missed and ended up running into Lee. Lee had his left ankle underneath the body of Maragos. A flag was thrown and Seattle was penalized, but the officiating crew called ‘Running into the kicker’ instead of ‘Roughing the kicker’.

There’s a 10 yard and first down difference between the two. Seattle should have been flagged for roughing the kicker, which would have given San Francisco a fresh set of downs. But the show continued on and right now we’re witnessing a nail biter of a game.

Here’s a look at the hit Lee took after punting away the ball. He limped off the field in obvious pain.


Tags: Andy Lee San Francisco 49ers Seattle Seahawks

  • Todd

    David Miniel, since you claimed it should have been roughing the kicker and not running into the kicker, I’m going to request that you explain why.

    From what I can read, the main difference is that blatant, intentional contact is called roughing the kicker; inadvertent contact is called running into the kicker; and often the difference is simply the judgement of the official. But, I am no expert on this call.

    So, please explain and please refer to the rulebook and/or comparable situations, because I don’t understand the difference that well. Thanks!

    • toooitchy

      blatant has nothing to do with it, if that was the case you wouldn’t see any calls for roughing the kicker, because nobody is going to show intent, that’s just stupid. This wasn’t intentional, but it does fall under the rules for “roughing the kicker”, and the clauses that would change it to “running into the kicker”, don’t apply to this situation, despite some peoples claims to the contrary (saying he landed ON the Seattle player instead of the ground, saying he was moving towards the player, saying he was still in the air when contact occurred), as you can see this was “roughing” through and through.

  • Bumper King

    Hey Todd maybe you should actually read the rule. Clearly says if the defender’s runs into the kicker in matter which might cause injury to the kicker. Well rolling into the kickers leg or ankle might cause an injury, you think? Refs made the wrong call.

    • adrifter

      Okay– Someone here who did check the rule book right when that call “questioned by the announcers”

      I admit there is some ambiguity, which means some room for interpretation — which probably means that most people will just dismiss anything that doesn’t agree with what they already think.

      My opinion: it was a big call in the game: But unlike the goal line fumble (which should have been SF’s and luckily had little impact on game).

      I think the Refs got this call right– Here’s why:

      First:
      What I noted is that the rule specifically says “run into” — this is vague, since it could imply intent, but perhaps not– I didn’t see any intent on the part of the defender, so it seems open on that point.– The defender was airborne, and therefore not able to adjust his course, BEFORE the kick was made and slid on a line that the kicker moved into.

      Second:
      point b for roughing says it isn’t roughing if the contact is caused by the movement of the kicker. In the GIF above, where we can see the kicker moving forward from right to left, he clearly moves forward into the sliding defender’s path.

      Third: And I’ll admit this very subjective, and open to criticism, but I don’t think the house of cards falls down if you don’t agree with it. The rules specifically state that it is not roughing if the contact “is not severe” — what severe means isn’t defined, but the play was a slide and a bump that created a trip, not a direct hit in any way– That said, I hear those who say that a rolled ankle could be severe. I just think that in this game, that type of contact is going to happen.

      Fourth: (This is why I really think they got it right)

      The rule for hitting the kicker specifically says that sliding under the kicker, not allowing both feet to return to the ground. — The seattle player was sliding on a line that the kicker moved into.

      While not text-book– I see greater similarities to the hitting the kicker call (what was actually called) than to the roughing the passer. — The only counter I see is the “If in doubt, it is roughing the passer” but that assumes the refs had doubt on the call– and from what I saw, the call came pretty quickly.

      _________________________

      The actual rules are pasted below
      ———————————–
      Article 10:

      Roughing/Running into the Kicker

      No defensive player may run into or rough a kicker who kicks from behind

      the line unless such contact:

      (a) is incidental to and occurs after the defender has touched the kick in flight;

      (b) is caused by the kicker’s own motions;

      (c) occurs during a quick kick or a rugby-style kick;

      (d) occurs during or after a run behind the line;

      (e) occurs after the kicker recovers a loose ball on the ground; or

      OFFICIAL NFL PLAYING RULES 69

      RULE

      12,

      SECTION

      2,

      ARTICLE

      9

      (f) occurs because a defender is pushed or blocked (causing a change of direction) into the kicker; or

      (g) is the result of a foul by an opponent.

      Item 1: Roughing the kicker

      .

      It is a foul for roughing the kicker if a defensive player:

      (a) contacts the plant leg of the kicker while his kicking leg is still in the air; or

      (b) slides into or contacts the kicker when both of the kicker’s feet are on the ground.

      It is not a foul if the contact is not severe, or if the kicker returns both feet to the ground prior to the contact and falls over a defender who is on the ground.

      Note: When in doubt, it is a foul for roughing the kicker.

      Item 2: Running into the Kicker

      .

      It is a foul for running into the kicker if a defensive player:

      (a) contacts the kicking foot of the kicker, even if the kicker is airborne when the contact occurs; or

      (b) slides under the kicker, preventing him from returning both feet to the ground.

      Penalties:

      (1) For roughing the kicker: Loss of 15 yards from the previous spot (personal foul)

      and an automatic first down.

      The player may be disqualified if the action is flagrant.

      (2)
      For running into the kicker: Loss of five yards from the
      previous spot (not a personal foul). There is not an

      automatic first down.

      A.R. 12.10

      Kicker A1 in punt formation muffs a snap. He recovers on
      the ground and then kicks. A1 is run into, blocked, or tackled by

      B1 who had started his action when A1 first recovered.

      Ruling:

      Legal action by B1.

      A.R. 12.11

      Fourth-

      and

      -12 on B30. On a field-goal attempt which is not good, receiver B1 runs into the kicker without touching the

      ball.

      Ruling:

      A’s ball fourth

      -

      and

      -7 on B25. Running into the kicker. If the field goal had been good, no penalty would be

      enforced on the succeeding kickoff, since it was not a personal foul. A

      • Samurai2083

        From the rules you just posted:

        “It is a foul for roughing the kicker if a defensive player:

        (a) contacts the plant leg of the kicker while his kicking leg is still in the air; or”

        You can’t get more clear-cut from that. How is this hard to see? Everyone in the world pointed that out and yet there isn’t a referee on that field that knows this? All your reaching above doesn’t change the one simple fact that it was his planted leg that was rolled into. This botched call is simply one that cannot be argued with, and any attempt to is reaching at most.

        • adrifter

          Read all of the rules– the hitting the kicker is clearly listed in cases where a player slides under the other causing the kicker to land less than cleanly– That isn’t reaching– That is a nuance that you’re choosing to interpret differently.

          The kicker had both legs in the air, and the non-kicking
          leg was hit as he came back down in the path of the sliding player–
          meaning his motion contributed to the contact.

          You can disagree with my interpretation– that’s the point, there is room for interpretation– if there wasn’t the rules would just flat say “touch the plant leg, it is roughing– and nothing else.

          By definition, since there is more to the rules listed– it is not that
          simple. To argue otherwise is to either obscure a truth because it is
          inconvenient, or to be ignorant of that the rules are actually nuanced
          in that respect.

          You may not like the nuance, and that is again your right– but don’t try to make me look silly by saying that the rules clearly say you’re right when they do no such thing.

          • Samurai2083

            I did read all the rules. Even the parts you just posted. If you watch the replay above again, its clear that #42 didn’t even touch Lee till his leg was planted on the ground. That clearly falls under the roughing the kicker rule.

            I guess I’ll have to explain what I mean by reaching, because the only loophole that is found in these rules is that one looks like it overlaps into the other. Let’s look at roughing the kicker:

            “It is a foul for roughing the kicker if a defensive player:

            (a) contacts the plant leg of the kicker while his kicking leg is still in the air; or

            (b) slides into or contacts the kicker when both of the kicker’s feet are on the ground.”

            The scenario of this rule is that the kicker is on the ground in some fashion. In the situation where a kicker is contacted while on the ground, these rules apply. Let’s look at running into the kicker:

            “It is a foul for running into the kicker if a defensive player:

            (a) contacts the kicking foot of the kicker, even if the kicker is airborne when the contact occurs; or

            (b) slides under the kicker, preventing him from returning both feet to the ground.”

            The scenario of this rule is that the kicker is fully in the air, or has been contacted by a part of his body in the air. (b) is where the interpretation comes in. Based on the rules for roughing previously stated, and the rules for part (a) of this rule, sliding under the kicker (indicating that the defender’s body is fully under the kicker) indicates that the kicker is completely in the air. Now, part (b) doesn’t say that directly, but using inference and reference to previously stated rules and scenarios, we can confidently interpret that. That is why I called your statements reaching, because its based on the weaker argument of interpretation.

            If that doesn’t solidify it, this statement in the rules pretty much sums up any confusion that one may have on the field:

            “Note: When in doubt, it is a foul for roughing the kicker.”

            Also recognizing that this is part of the roughing the kicker statement where it questions whether the foul was severe or not. But also take into account that roughing the kicker rule (a) somewhat overlaps running into the kicker rule (b), which is where doubt can occur … making this statement the default for knowing what to call in unclear situations (which I’m not advocating the scenario last night was unclear).

            Simply put, there was little to no room for the official to call that running into the kicker. Based on the rules, its just as clear to call that roughing the kicker as it would be to say 1 + 1 = 2.

            I also want to say my intention wasn’t to try to make you look silly or to call you out. Not everything is subjective or based on opinion … lawyers make a living off of re-interpreting rules and laws that are pretty clear on the surface, but can be explained away with a bit of creative perspective shifting. So I apologize if my tone seemed offensive.

          • adrifter

            I appreciate the clarification on your tone. I honestly believe that we’re just looking at this from very different
            perspectives: I see the existence of two rules as proof that
            interpretation is a valid approach, while you want to argue for what you
            feel is a literal interpretation. IF we have to agree to disagree, I am okay with that.

            That said:

            Here is why I still disagree with some of your responses. From my perspective, it seems as if you argue for a literal interpretation in some cases — the rules say if the planted leg is hit then it is roughing, but in others your explanation requires some interpretation– you say that it is for when both legs are in the air and the kicker lands on the player– but that isn’t written in the language of the rule– it is an interpretation that you’re making based on your assumed intent of the rule.

            Mine is that I feel that the rule makers understood that some contact would be unintentional, and was different than than hits designed to hurt someone, so the penalties should be different.– don’t hit them ever, but if it looks intentional, the team will keep possession and get a first down as a deterrent, with subjectivity part of the equation to keep people honest, without being ridiculous about it — It is the ref’s call either way. Certain scenarios can be called hitting the kicker, without escalating to roughing, but that application is up to the judges on the field.

            Second– If the scenario were so clear cut, two separate penalties would not be needed. Remember, the roughing states that if the contact isn’t severe it doesn’t have to be called roughing. Your literal interpretation does not address this caveat that is listed in the rules– and to call for a literal application, this has to be at least acknowledged.

            The part of “if in doubt…” doesn’t convince me either, because just like in a court of law, some doubt is going to always be there. The application of that doubt is really the key point.

            — if there wasn’t supposed to be some judgment, then the rule could just simply be “if there is contact, it is roughing” with the idea being that you’d never know for sure if it was intentional or not, or really severe or not, or if the kicker really didn’t cause the contact.– This doubt will always be there, so why have two rules? Because interpretation of the events at play on the field need cannot be encoded in a rulebook perfectly.

            — So to sum up, as you can tell, I personally believe this was the right call. I don’t think the player meant to hit the kicker, and he only did so when sliding after jumping, and the kickers own inertia carried him into the path of the slide.

            That said, I acknowledge that I am not impartial in this. If the ref’s had ruled it the other way, I would see the wiggle room in both rules and accept the call on the field as roughing– but that’s not what they called it.

            My goal is to show that the idea that the refs blatantly ignored a rule to “help” the Seahawks is an exaggeration at best.

          • Samurai2083

            Two different perspectives, maybe. I just find the rules in this particular event are pretty clear and, although can be contested by a small window of interpretation (which is weak at most), I can’t imagine the refs not making the clear call, especially when a game like this is extemely important.

            And yes, I’m taking a literal interpretation of the rules on this, as should the refs. The conditions of the first part of the rule is met in part (a), so therefore, everything after that doesn’t matter, whether the rules for running into the kicker can be interpreted to be true or not. The only thing that could render part (a) of the roughing rule is what you mentioned about it being severe or not. This is definitely a judgement call for the ref, but there was clear doubt on whether the defender running into Lee was severe or not (rolling slightly onto his leg causing Lee to fall over the defender seems pretty severe, especially with Lee holding his leg as if he was hurt). That is why the (note) after that paragraph states: “When in doubt, it is a foul for roughing the kicker.”. That part of the paragraph doesn’t mention anything about “intention”, but the actual result of the foul being severe. As I won’t disagree on the pupose having two separate rules for the different scenarios, nothing in that event justifies looking beyond what is literally said in the rules for roughing, which by design is listed above the “running into” conditions.

            Other points you bring up can be contested as well, such as your comment on the kicker’s inertia moving into the defender … nah, look at the replay above and you’ll see he was coming down and only moved towards the defender when the defender hit him.

            Regardless, I appreciate your honesty in your statement on not be impartial. As someone that lives in the world of reasoning and logic, I can see that the call was clearly wrong, regardless of the team. Where I am not impartial, and disagreeing with you on the ref’s role in the Seahawks game as being an exaggeration, is that if this was the only clear play that the refs should have gotten right, then I would agree. But there were so many other plays in that game, one in particular that was just as clear cut as the kicker penalty, that puts a spotlight on what the refs were there to do. Factor in the moments where the momentum shifted throughout the game, and at the very least a few eyebrows should be raised. I’m sure that last statement will incite more comments on conspiracy theories and the such, but I have no interest in that subject and won’t respond.

            I don’t want to spend too much more time on this because, well frankly, it doesn’t really do any good now. But what does matter, apparently, is public opinion when it comes to the internet. If no one is talking about this, then it really has no impact in the long run. This is my contribution in keeping it relevant because when all is said and done, this one play is what really made the least sense throughout that whole game.

          • toooitchy

            The rules are convoluted and vague (which makes no sense, how do you make rules that are going to not only be held up absolutely, but decide things of major significance, like the super bowl. According to the full rule, I fail to see how anything in this play falls under the exclusions of the roughing the kicker rules, all punters jump a little bit when punting, they all drift slightly to the side because of the inertia being imparted upon the kicking leg, making the plant leg a bit wobbly, the lateral movement was not the reason he got ran into, therefore it cannot be used to disprove the call.

            The risk of injury in this instance is unbelievable, that can end someones career instantly, you could tear all kinds of ligaments, including your achilles, you can break your leg, ankle, dislocate your shoulder, etc. This fact also qualifies it as a roughing penalty.

          • adrifter

            So I’m not sure how to respond to your post–

            What we can agree on is that yes, someone rolling their ankle can be a season/career ending injury.

            But beyond that I’m not sure if you think the rules are vague, or if you think they’re clear.– I would agree with you if you think they’re vague. There are two rules that overlap, and cover very similar situations. This means that interpretation is involved.

            But if you argue they’re vague as written, but clear in application I disagree:

            By your logic, since not everyone who goes even one mile over the speed limit gets a ticket, actually getting a ticket for doing so is “Wrong” because the application of the rule is inconsistent.– technically everyone who gets away with it is benefiting from the rules being ignored– so doing what a rule says is not actually breaking any kind of rule at all.

            From there, if the rule is actually vague, and can be interpreted differently, it isn’t wrong to actually interpret the rule differently.– This doesn’t give people license to just make things up. But they don’t have to follow rules that are not actually written.

            So…

            The hitting the kicker rule just says that a sliding player has to slide into the kicker– there is no rule that says that both legs have to be in the air, so having one leg down doesn’t change anything since the rule only talks about being able to return both feet to the ground. — room to argue hitting the kicker was right.

            That said, To me there is really no other situation that would apply— no defender would jump and slide so early that they’d be there while the kicker was still in the air– they’d hit the ball or just try to cause a fumble. No kicker does a flying jumpkick as they punt either– so the only situation where sliding players are going to be making contact with kickers that jumped as the ball was being kicked but were not in range to hit it.

            As for the rule on roughing– the word unless cannot just be ignored because you don’t like it. Kickers move forward to kick the ball, so yes they will be moving forward and can create contact with other players. The roughing rule gives some VERY UNDEFINED leeway that contact created by the kicker’s motion does not have to be called ROUGHING… acting as if the first part of the rule is the only part that matters is as obviously wrong as thinking this is a valid:

            All People are men, unless they are women.

            Suzy (female) is a person, therefore she’s a man. The rule clearly says, that all people are men, the rest that follows after this doesn’t matter.

            IT does matter– and anyone with a kindergartner’s grasp of English knows that it matters.

            So the “unless” in the roughing rule matters too. The problem is that as we both agree, the rule it is vague.

            This means we have a clause in the roughing rule that indicates this is a situation where the rule says roughing DOES NOT HAVE TO BE THE CALL combined with a situation that is described in the language of the hitting the kicker rule.

            So, is it that you don’t like the vagueness of these rules? That’s a different problem than saying the ref’s ignored a rule.

            Some rules as written are dumb and bad: Case in point, SF not being able to review that goal line turnover. You had it, the whole world saw it, but because of the rules– it could not be challenged. — THAT IS A BAD RULE and I hope that it get’s changed— but, it is the current rule, so the ref’s made the right call in following the rules when they applied it.

            If you want to petition the league to make the roughing/hitting rules more clear, I’ll sign too. In the meantime, the ref’s had reasons that are listed in the rules to make the call that they did, and they know these rules better than fans or even announcers.

          • toooitchy

            I don’t disagree with most of your points, however officials with the nfl have said the wrong call was made, I understand that the language of the rule leaves some interpretation of what happened, but that doesn’t change the league coming forward and admitting that the call should have been roughing. We disagree on the application of the vague language of movements and what not, I have heard far too many people make the claim that Andy Lee purposely made contact with maragos, which is ridiculous because it’s clear in the videos that he never even looked in his direction, had no idea he was there, and other claims that he landed on maragos, which again is false as his cleat clearly is on the grass with full weight on it before contact is made, and finally that he embellished contact. This is obviously a point where bias makes it difficult to believe either side, but from the video alone, his ankle rolls under maragos, and it rolls significantly, not enough to break, but anyone who’s sprained or slipped and rolled.an ankle like that knows that it has the potential to be painful, even if not sprained, it can hurt and be tough to walk on for 10-15 minutes after, so it’s not exactly a stretch to assume that he did in fact suffer pain and difficulty walking off the field. The other point that is right to make to people who aren’t familiar with Andy Lee, it’s that he does not flop and try to embellish contact for flags. In fact I have a very hard time even remembering the last time the 49ers were punting and a penalty was called for contact with the kicker, he just doesn’t fake contact, he focuses on the point, which is why he’s one of if not the best punter in the league. I know none of these claims were made by you, but I feel deserve explanation and should be factored in to people’s opinions on the play, because they do play a part in what happened, and how people are interpreting the film, and the rule that affects it.

            Either way, what’s done is done, that was a huge moment that likely had a huge impact on the outcome of the game, but is far from the only reason SF lost. However a teams performance does not excuse poor officiating, just like it’s not fair for the league to be given a pass on the fumble failure simply because the football gods made up for it on the very next play. Officiating had been absolutely awful this season for every single team, and in just about every playoff game, there has been more and more bad officiating. Honestly I’m worried about what kind of mistakes they’re going to make in the super bowl, regardless of who wins I cannot handle another champion being tainted by the refs, be it Seattle or Denver, I just hope the winner is clear and decisive.

            These controversial calls overshadow what was an incredible NFC championship game that came down to the final play, between two teams that would probably go 50-50 if they played that game a hundred times in a row.

      • toooitchy

        a 250+ pound man sliding into your ankle while you’re coming down on one foot after a punt is easily capable of producing a career ending injury, do you not see his ankle roll over and his leg contort to try and straighten it out/get off it before it breaks/tears ligaments.

        The rule might be ambiguous, but its application hasn’t been, when you run into a kickers kicking leg, it’s a 5 yard penalty. This is not dangerous contact, you might make the kicker lose his balance and fall, maybe he pulls a muscle, whatever, mild stuff. However you start sliding perpendicular into a foot with cleats on grass, weighing 250+ pounds, and the owner of the foot landing off a tiny hop from the punt, not looking at his leg about to be crumpled….. Wooo, you’re talking a plethora of devastating injuries that could result from such contact.

        The wrong call was made, plain and simple, the officials made a concerted effort to put Seattle on the beneficial side of the penalties and rulings. Sorry, but you claim that the team that very clearly recovered the fumble, with no seahawks in sight, and lost one of its best players, possibly the best, on the play to a gruesome leg injury, the one who recovered the fumble and didn’t drop it despite the unimaginable pain. The football gods may have done their part to right the ship after that travesty of officiating, but that doesn’t excuse the refs, nor does it turn the spotlight away from the refs and their obvious plot to benefit Seattle.

        I rarely blame refs for a loss, that’s usually a bad excuse, but in the case of this game, it’s completely warranted, you don’t have a game full of terrible penalties, all against the same team, and then twice in that game you have potential game changing calls muffed, a fumble recovered clear as day that is given to Seattle, and won’t be reviewed, and then the “roughing the kicker that wasn’t…..called”. It’s not coincidence.

    • Gaboogle Moogle

      Any time a defender runs into the kicker it *might* cause injury. So every single time running into the kicker is called, it should actually be called as roughing the kicker. BUUUUUUUUUUUUURP. GO HAWKS!

      • toooitchy

        No, running into the plant leg has the potential to cause severe injury, hence it being 15 yards and an automatic first down. Have some class child, the bandwagon has already left you.

    • toooitchy

      Wrong call was made, but that’s not really what the rule says.

  • Ward

    If the defender slides under the kicker, preventing him from landing on the ground, it is running into the kicker. There is no intent mentioned in the rule. Refs made the right call, Troy Aikmen is stupid.

    • Master Flash

      Item 1: Roughing the kicker

      .It is a foul for roughing the kicker if a defensive player:

      (a) contacts the plant leg of the kicker while his kicking leg is still in the air

      Learn to read; it will have a good impact in your life.

      • adrifter

        You should learn to keep reading both rules AND take your own advice:

        The kicker was airborne:

        It is a foul for running into the kicker if a defensive player:

        (a) contacts the kicking foot of the kicker, even if the kicker is airborne when the contact occurs; or

        (b) slides under the kicker, preventing him from returning both feet to the ground.

        – To say that the refs “blew” that call is just wrong. You might have interpreted it differently, but their pros at it, and you’re not.

    • adrifter

      Ward– Fair point– I was trying to be objective rather than just a fanboy, but I see that a short answer would have been better in hindsight.

  • Randy Owens

    It’s simple. If you hit the plant leg, it’s roughing.

    • adrifter

      “It is a foul for running into the kicker if a defensive player:

      (a) contacts the kicking foot of the kicker, even if the kicker is airborne when the contact occurs; or

      (b) slides under the kicker, preventing him from returning both feet to the ground.”

      Whether you agree with the rule or not— rule B for running into the kicker above shows that the situation is not as simple as you claim.

      • toooitchy

        Lee landed before he was hit, have you not seen the play? If he didn’t land prior to contact, his ankle wouldn’t roll over and tweak his knee the way it did, that only happens when there is an outside force imparting energy onto the ankle from a direction it’s not supposed to move.

    • toooitchy

      Not that simple, but the NFL says the wrong call was made.

  • Angelina

    These were the “All-star” officials and they don’t know the rules? That should be cause for concern.

    • toooitchy

      This whole season of officiating is cause for concern, they make me miss the replacement refs, lol. They have been making terrible calls all season long every single team was hurt by it at some point. The league should be embarrassed.

  • michael

    Wrong call was made cost 49ers the game. officials won game for Seatle

  • Ward

    Hahaha, been reading your posts, watch the gif, seriously, take a look at the goal line view, over the officials shoulder (you know the official who saw exactly what you are seeing, knows the rules, and made the call) Lee came down on Maragos, who was already on the ground, that is running into the kicker not roughing. This business about his plant leg being down, C’mon look at the gif, he lands directly on top of Maragos hand. You won’t see it in the sideline view, you only see his toe touch (after the aforementioned landing on Maragos), but in the goal line view it is clear as day. Take a deep breath and realize, the man who made that call, was rated as a top three official in all of football. He is much better at his job, than you are at yours. They blew calls in this game when they didn’t see them (a hit out of bounds, an increadible strip by bowman), but when these guys have eyes on, they are dead on.

    • toooitchy

      You’re not seeing what actually happened, take off your Seahawks tinted glasses.

    • toooitchy

      That top 3 official is also one of the most controversial, if not the most controversial in the entire league. He’s known for making outrageous, terrible calls, just to make headlines, and get himself attention.

    • toooitchy

      His cleat is in the turf, if it wasn’t his ankle wouldn’t roll the way it did because the cleats wouldn’t be dug into the grass holding the foot in place while the lateral movement of maragos pushes the leg sideways. I don’t understand how this could be seen any differently, Andy Lee does not fake contact when he punts, a lot of kickers do, and I have no problem with that, but lee doesn’t, and never has, it’s why he’s considered one of if not the best in the league, because he only focuses on the punt, not potential contact. To his detriment it caused him to almost sprain his ankle on this play because he never notices maragos coming in for the block, if he had he could have done something to minimize risk of injury, instead of letting his plant foot stick into the ground as he landed. I don’t understand this ridiculous level of denial, and vitriol Seattle fans are displaying when it comes to the terrible officiating the 49ers were subjected to in this game. It doesn’t change the fact that Seattle won, our take anything away from them, they made the plays when it counted, they also made a lot of the same mistakes the 49ers did during the game, the same ones that are being used to insult and antagonize 49er fans. Russell Wilson played like crop, fumbled the first play of the game, and yet all I hear is Seattle fans insulting kaepernick for his mistakes, despite being the one player Seattle couldn’t stop the entire game, until Richard Sherman displayed some of the most impressive, and ridiculous athleticism/hand eye coordination that I have ever seen, let alone from a DB, on the final play, to end the game.

      You realize that Seattle got screwed in the 05 super bowl by bad officiating, right? Seahawks fans were complaining for a long time after that game, and rightly so…. It’s unfortunate that this past week has been nothing but really poor behavior from seahawks fans, giving them a national stigma of being insufferable winners.

      PS, I LOVED Richard Sherman’s interview, he shouldn’t have been forced to apologize, this country is too damn sensitive, he had every right to be cocky and brash and excited, he just made a play that will define his career, and be remembered for all time, it’s too bad that people are choosing to focus on his comments immediately after, as though he’s a robot. The local SF sports radio guys have also been talking about that interview, obviously, and most, if not all of them said they liked it and had no problem work the comments. If that’s worth anything, seems to be the wimpy national media who freaked out over it.

  • sactown

    its running into the kicker cuz the punter jump into the defender. thats what i see.

  • Tim

    I am real tired of hearing how the officials won the game for Seattle, ok the officials only gave five yards for the running into the kicker and it should have been 15 yards. There is part of the rule that has not been talked about and that is how hard and if it was avoidable, it is not just black and white. If you want to keep hashing this one out, how about the hit on Lane when he was doing punt coverage and was forced out of bounds only to have a 49er player who was not in uniform hit him and knock him down. That would have been 15 yards for the seahawks. The call on the hit to the head of Willson by Whitner was a hit to the head, it was not shoulder to shoulder, Joe Buck and Troy Aikman have made bad calls saying the officials were wrong all season. Look at the play and watch Whitners left elbow and upper arm hit Willson in the head. It don’t think that Whitner intended injury to Willson, but currently there is no allowance for incidental contact on a hit to the head. Maybe they will change that this off-season, talk you the 49er owner and coach who will be part of the rules committees. Then there was the personal foul for the push out of bounds after the play was over, the league notified both teams that any actions after the whistle would be called, that was due to the violence after the whistle during the 49er Panthers game, both teams did way too many stupid things after the whistle. The you have the Bowman recovery, which the officials blew big time, if Seattle had scored on that I would say you were ripped off, but because Seattle fumbled the ball on the very next play and the 49ers recovered the ball out near the ten yard line that became a non issue in the overall game, I mean the 49ers gained 9 yards on that play by not having to start inside the one. There were missed calls and somewhat questionable calls on both sides, in reality the game was much better officiated than the game between the 49ers and the Panthers. What cost the 49ers the game was going for it all when they still had two time outs and were around the 18 yard line with time to work the ball. You have a great team with a young QB who is learning very fast, he is going to be better next year. It is time to put the towels away and look forward to a great 2014 season.

    • toooitchy

      That player still has not been proven to be a player, not everyone on the sidelines is a player, there are guys who do nothing but put costs on players and bring them drinks/towels, I wish Seattle fans would stop accusing a player when the league has already made it clear that it wasn’t a player and the team should not be punished for the actions of an unpaid volunteer.

    • toooitchy

      Just because Seattle fumbled a second time after having the fumble taken away from SF doesn’t mean people should just forget about that call being made to begin with…. the league should have to answer for that, there is no excuse for that fumble not being given to SF, and every single fan of the NFL should be terrified that such a blatant failure of officiating could happen in the 2nd biggest game of the year. There were a large number of incidents during that game that just felt wrong, from calls like the punter contact, bowman fumble recovery, Whitner personal foul when it’s clearly shoulder to shoulder, some very suspect ball spots on Lynch runs, etc. Yes there were a few things that should have been called on SF that weren’t, but none of them were potential game changers, and none of them were even clear cut, the closest to a clear missed call was the sideline incident, and nobody even noticed that until after the game because it was like 10 yards away from the field, and it was some guy nobody knows in street clothes who did it. Yeah, I hear Seattle fans saying it was a player, except there hasn’t been any confirmation as to who the player even is… there is a max of 53 on a roster, shouldn’t be hard to find the guy who didn’t play on Sunday… the fact is there are tons of people on each sideline, many of whom are there solely to put coats on players when it’s cold, and to bring them water. The league has made it pretty clear that the guy in question wasn’t a member of the organization, and the team should not be punished for the actions of some dumb volunteer. The 49ers are a hard hitting team, but they are not dirty, and they definitely don’t do stupid things like clothes line a guy while he’s trying to slow down after a play.