Here’s Part I if you missed it.
By Michael Burke – THE HOSTILE COWBOY
So Dez takes a hand away from the football and turns approximately 90 degrees towards the goal line. Do you know what every football player, coach, and fan in the world would call that? A “football move,” or a move “common to the game.” Do players try and score by crossing the goal line with the football? A move common to the game. Just like Calvin Johnson diving for the end zone.
Which brings me to a segue comment as a Dallas Cowboys fan. How ironic is it that Butch Johnson’s Touchdown catch in Super Bowl XII stands as a catch, because he had it in his hands when he crossed the plane of the goal line, and before his body touched the ground, and Dez Bryant’s play is ruled a non catch? Quite a dichotomy isn’t it? Even worse when you look at the Calvin Johnson play. All he did was leave the ball on the ground, and start celebrating. He didn’t even try to make it look like he had fumbled, and was trying to regain possession. Know why? Because he had scored, and he knew he had scored. Only idiots don’t think he caught that ball. Same with Dez.
It is a well known NFL axiom that once a Receiver has the football he becomes a runner. As soon as Dez had the football, and made a football move to advance the football, he was a runner. I think we can all agree with that. So let me ask a question, if the ball is handed off instead of thrown when is a runner down by contact? The answer is very simple. If either of his knees or elbows hit the ground or any part of his backside the runner is down. What does this have to do with the Dez Bryant play?
The ruling I heard was that Dez’s and Sam Shields’ legs got tangled, and this is what caused Dez, who had out jumped Shields on the play, to go towards the ground. In other words, this is contact by the defender. When would Dez be considered down by contact as a runner? Take a close look at the replay. His right elbow touched the ground long before the ball comes out. If he was going to the ground as a the result of tangled legs, he was down right there, by contact, where his right elbow hit the ground. The ball cannot be advanced any further, and it also cannot be fumbled, or ruled incomplete. I should also point out a knee also hit before his left arm did.
At the point we agree that Dez is down by contact it means that anything that happens after that moment is inconsequential. In other words, the ball coming loose doesn’t even matter. You know like how the replays always show us that yeah, the ball came loose, but his knee was already down? How many times have we seen that? Yet for some absolutely mystifying reason, it doesn’t apply to this one play. Well, I mean I know it does to people who are intelligent. I’m talking about the three new stooges and anyone who accepts their blather.
Now let’s get to the actual ball coming loose. NFL Rules state that for a play to be overturned by the replay there has to be incontrovertible visual evidence that the play call on the field was wrong. The call on the field was a Catch, and score. Question number 1, is there incontrovertible evidence that Bryant and Shields made no contact with each other at all? This is important, because if they did not then the ball coming loose when Dez goes to the ground can be ruled a fumble. If they did, then as soon as Dez touched the ground the play was dead, and the ball coming loose doesn’t even matter. I have yet to see one person state that there is incontrovertible evidence that there was no contact between the two players at all. Can you tell me there wasn’t? They never touched? No, you can’t tell me that, and the referees can’t either.
Let’s take it further. For grins and giggles let’s imagine that Shields wasn’t there and there was no contact. We remove that cloudy moment from the play completely. Dez just fell to the ground. I can’t begin to tell you why he would fall without contact, but we need to use our imaginations and assume there was no contact to get to the next point. Is there a single frame that clearly shows that the ball clearly touches the ground? The answer is no. Dez’s left arm is cradling the ball (that the new three stooges don’t think he had control of despite the very laws of physics and psychology saying is impossible), and no frame has ever shown unequivocally and incontrovertibly that the football makes clear and indisputable contact with the ground.
This HOSTILITY will be continued one more time