Overturned fumble in Seahawks-Cardinals leaves Twitter baffled about catch rule
At least once a week in the NFL, there’s one play that makes question everything you know about the catch rule. This week, that play came during the first half of the Seahawks-Cardinals game.
With just under one minute to play in the second quarter, Drew Stanton dropped back to pass on a third-and-9 play from Seattle’s 38-yard line. Stanton found Andre Ellington in the flat and threw a quick pass to his running back, who appeared to catch the ball and then fumble it.
After seeing the ball on the ground, Kam Chancellor picked the fumble up and returned it 17 yards.
To everyone on the field, it seemed like Ellington fumbled it. After all, he caught the pass at the 31-yard line…
And then went a full six yards before stumbling down (without being touched) and fumbling the ball at the 25-yard line.
Of course, just because you go six yards with the ball in your hand doesn’t mean you actually caught the ball. Although the play was called a fumble on the field, it ended up being overturned and ruled an incomplete pass.
The ref’s reasoning was that Ellington never finished the process of making the catch, even though he moved a full 18 feet with the ball.
The decision to overturn the call left everyone on Twitter completely baffled, including the Seahawks.
Even Richard Sherman wanted an explanation for why the play wasn’t ruled a fumble.
The play also had everyone questioning if they even know what a catch is anymore if Ellington moving six yards with the ball doesn’t count as a catch.
Fortunately for the Seahawks, the fact that the play got overturned didn’t end up hurting them. After the play was ruled an incomplete pass, the Cardinals went for it on fourth down and didn’t convert. The Seahawks were then able to use the final 46 seconds of the half to get in field goal range to push their lead to 15-7.
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