Perhaps the worst officiating weekend in NFL history culminated in a "successful" Hail Mary attempt by Seattle Monday night in their 14-12 defeat of Green Bay.
To see all the officiating blunders, see my run down of the Sunday day games here.
The final play was a Hail Mary pass. Green Bay rushed three players. At the last moment before being hit by Clay Matthews, Russell Wilson threw the ball into the end zone where Golden Tate had pushed Packer cornerback Sam Shields to the ground.
M.D. Jennings went up and caught the ball to his chest. Tate caught Jennings while Jennings has the ball. An official ran in and signaled touchdown while another signaled to stop the clock. Both were right on top of the play. The touchdown call stood despite a replay review.
It wasn't simultaneous possession though. It was one player with possession and another with his arm caught in the chest along with the ball. It was one player catching the ball and Tate catching that player. It was one player with the ball on his chest and Tate with that player on his chest.
An absolute robbery of a victory from the Green Bay Packers. Do we need any further proof the NFL has no interest in truth, integrity, or justice by letting that Seattle victory stand in replay and a day later?
Perhaps this is a microcosm of society today. There is virtually no truth, integrity, or justice in much more important areas of life, like the justice system, business, or government. Why should the NFL be any different?
On the preceding Seattle drive Green Bay had what would have probably been a game ending interception wiped put by another atrocious call against Erik Walden for roughing the quarterback. Shortly after that Green Bay was flagged for pass interference when Seattle receiver Sydney Rice pulled on the shoulder pads of the Packer defensive back.
Green Bay dominated the second half of play after being dominated in the first half. Despite the domination they only scored 13 points. The Packers had 181 of their 268 total yards in the second half. They ran the ball 17 times compared to two runs in the first half.
I have made it clear my thoughts on the Packers lack of offensive success being directly related to their commitment to the run. In the first half, Green Bay handed off just twice and scored zero points and had just 87 yards of offense. The second half explosion featured 17 hand-offs. It is not coincidental.
With no running plays to worry about Seattle managed eight first half sacks and made the Packer offense look amateur. Credit to the Packer coaching staff. They are one of the best at making in game adjustments and Seattle had zero sacks in the second half.
Unfortunately for Green Bay, Aaron Rodgers doesn't seem to be making the same adjustments. There is no question Rodgers is holding the ball longer this year, hesitant to pull the trigger. I don't have access to the video to see if the receivers are that covered or Rodgers isn't seeing the field well.
I have seen enough to know there have been occasions he has missed the open receiver. So I am inclined to believe this is happening more often then all the talented Packer receivers are consistently covered.
Perhaps the lack of protection has Rodgers looking more at the rush and less at the coverage. Whatever the cause, it is happening and needs to be addressed. There is a lack of big plays or even shots at big plays and virtually no timing routes. The lack of offense is now more of a concern than the defense.
Rodgers was 26 of 39 for 223 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs, and a 81.5 passer rating. Cedric Benson had 17 carries for 45 yards and a touchdown. Greg Jennings had a game high 10 targets and hauled in six of them for 35 yards. Jermichael Finley had four catches for 60 yards.
For the second week in a row the Packer defense was fantastic. Other then the first half touchdown to Golden Tate, Seahawk receivers were blanketed and Wilson was under pressure most of the night. The mobile Wilson managed to avoid all but one sack. He was forced to throw it away at least four different times, was hit another three times, and scramble two others. Not bad on 21 passing attempts.
Wilson ended the night 10 of 21 for 130 yards, 2 TDs, 0 INTs, and a 99.3 passer rating. Marshawn Lynch had 98 yards on 25 carries. Tate led the receivers with three catches for 68 yards and two touchdowns.
Seattle was held to just 238 total yards, 130 passing. I was disappointed to see Green Bay rush just three players, outside the red zone, on each of the last two drives.
There was a total of 24 penalties called for 245 yards.
Seattle moves to 2-1 with the victory and Green Bay falls to 1-2.