This probably isn’t going to make the Browns feel any better, but the NFL has admitted that one of the most controversial plays from their 45-42 loss to the Raiders on Sunday should have worked out in their favor.
The pivotal play came with 6:28 remaining in the fourth quarter in a game that the Browns were leading 35-34 at the time.
On the third-and-9 play, Derek Carr dropped back to pass and immediately got mauled in the backfield by Myles Garrett and Genard Avery. Carr got hit so hard that he lost the ball for what appeared to be an obvious fumble. However, the whistle-happy officiating crew in Oakland said the fumble didn’t count because they had blown the play dead.
The NFL‘s vice president of officiating, Al Riveron, released a rules video on Friday where he admitted his guys got the call wrong. You can see Riveron’s explanation of the play beginning at the 2:37 mark in the video below.
“We ruled the passer stopped for forward progress and we kill the play,” Riveron said. “This is not forward progress. Obviously, this is a fumble. We should not have blown the whistle.”
Since the play had been blown dead due to forward progress, Riveron noted that there was nothing the officiating crew could do to fix things in a possible review.
“Because we ruled forward progress on the play, this play is not reviewable,” Riveron said. “This play would only be reviewable if it pertains to the line to gain or the goal line.”
The play was an excruciating one for the Browns, because after Carr “fumbled,” Browns defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi picked up the ball and had a pretty clear path to the end zone.
With the fumble taken off the board, the Raiders kept the ball and ended up punting on fourth down. After that, the Browns would end up scoring a touchdown three plays later to take a 42-34 lead.
Although the NFL admitted they got this play wrong, the league still stands by the other controversial call that went against the Browns. Earlier this week, Riveron explained why an.