The Philadelphia Eagles' perfect season came to end in bitter fashion Monday night. Not only did turnovers cost the Eagles a win, but the referees also had a major impact on how things unfolded in the fourth quarter.
A missed face mask call on Dallas Goedert's late fumble, plus a questionable unnecessary roughness flag on Brandon Graham, ended up sealing Philadelphia's fate. The officials attempted to explain these controversial plays following the game.
Referee Alex Kemp spoke to pool reporter Zach Berman after the contest. On the Goedert fumble, Kemp said "We didn't see a face mask on the field" and clarified the review was only to determine who had possession of the fumble.
Regarding the game-clinching penalty on Graham, Kemp was the one who made that call. The official said he "ruled the quarterback had clearly given himself up" and was therefore a "defenseless player", which prompted the flag after Graham's hit.
These explanations won't make Eagles fans feel any better about this officiating crew. There was no responsibility taken for missing the obvious face mask on Goedert that robbed Philadelphia of a drive to potentially take the lead.
The frustration with the Graham call is two-fold. Some are upset with the rule itself, as Graham's hit followed the textbook definition of unnecessary roughness but he didn't cause any harm. Others think the penalty shouldn't have been thrown considering how Heinicke's half-slide, half-kneeldown was an awkward football play. It would've been difficult to handle for any defender to handle that situation considering the NFL's rules on making sure players are down when they hit the ground.
This will ultimately be a frustrating game to look back on, but Philadelphia can still hold its head high after an 8-1 start to the year. They'll look to bounce back in Week 11 against the Indianapolis Colts.
Isaiah De Los Santos is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Isaiah De Los Santos also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username zayyy05328. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.
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