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False Start That Never Was


In Tennessee's 13-10 victory over Baltimore, referee Bill Carollo called a personal foul against Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs for unnecessary roughness against quarterback Kerry Collins that had a major impact on the outcome.
The sequence in question took place with 5 minutes 57 seconds left in the game and Baltimore ahead, 10-6. The Titans had the ball and were facing third down and 10 from their 20-yard line. Before the snap, a whistle blew when tackle Michael Roos moved after he was set. Most of the players ignored the whistle, however, and Suggs's right arm brushed the side of Collins's helmet.
Ravens players seemed convinced the call would go against Roos, but Carollo explained that contact with Collins's helmet trumped the false start because of a rule designed to protect quarterbacks.
"A 15-yard penalty, coupled with a false start -- it's called a five and 15, which means the five-yard penalty is ignored and only the 15-yard penalty is enforced," he said.
The Titans went on to finish the 11-play, 80-yard drive capped by the winning touchdown pass from Collins to tight end Alge Crumpler.
Suggs said he did not think his hit on Collins warranted the call.
"I was trying to get my hand in the passing lane and maybe block a ball," Suggs said. "We hit arms."
What's your reaction to the pivotal call that helped Tennessee remain undefeated?

By Gene Wang  |  October 6, 2008; 10:28 AM ET  | Category:  NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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I believe, like most readers, that the only fair and objective solution is to call the play to the benefit of the team I am rooting for.

Posted by: jad | October 7, 2008 10:40 AM

Regardless of what happened after the whistle was blown, a false start is a false start and immediately ends the play. Had the officials blown the whistles louder or longer or whatever, Suggs would have never tried to get to the QB. If this rule is so needed, why was Tennesee not given a penalty for throwing Joe Flacco to the ground around the 5 when the Ravens false started? You can throw a QB on his head, you just can't touch it, give me a break.....

Posted by: Bill | October 7, 2008 10:51 AM

cool site :)

Posted by: BradandPitti | October 14, 2008 10:33 AM

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