Blog Entry

Where was flag on Santonio Holmes' celebration?

Posted on: February 2, 2009 1:13 pm
Edited on: February 2, 2009 4:37 pm

I have the pleasure of sitting near a TV running endless SportsCenter loops.

If you think that's an ideal work environment, trust me, it ain't after the fourth highlight clip narrated by Chris Berman enters your right ear. 

However, it has brought something to my attention regarding Super Bowl XLIII. Santonio Holmes' catch, in all its best-ever glory , was capped with a clear violation of NFL rules.

He used the ball as a prop in his LeBron-homage celebration.

In a game littered with yellow flags, that's a no-brainer. That's ref 101.

Ask Joe Horn, Chad Johnson or pretty much any receiver not named Hines Ward.

No flag. No 15 yards enforced on the kickoff. No big deal?

Fifteen yards shaved off a kickoff often isn't often a big deal. But when there's 35 seconds on the clock, your team has two timeouts and when your quarterback has to march the offense down the length of the field, 15 yards is a big deal.

Fifteen yards changes the kickoff coverage, it adds life to the kickoff return team and it, well, it's simply part of the rules.

A big gaffe in a game where the refs seemed to have their whistle senses finely tuned. Maybe the action was obstructed because it was in the back of the endzone. But it's now part of the standard Super Bowl b-roll. I'd imagine Arizona fans treat it as a clear slap in the face.

Whether it would changed the outcome of the game anybody knows, but I agree with them.

Category: NFL

Since: Jan 8, 2007
Posted on: February 2, 2009 4:29 pm

Where was flag on Santonio Holmes' celebration?

What about the fact that Kurt Warner took his helmet off on the field (arguing his first fumble that was overturned) and did not receive a penalty despite Pitt getting hit with the same penalty later on? Or do non-calls only count for the team playing the Steelers?

Both plays had ZERO impact on the game and penalizing either would be sad in the Super Bowl. This is a very silly thing to complain about.

Since: Apr 25, 2008
Posted on: February 2, 2009 3:49 pm

Where was flag on Santonio Holmes' celebration?

I think the real issue is that the prop was powder and he was reenacting LeBron James' pregame routine, not a salt shaker. C'mon.

Since: Jan 15, 2007
Posted on: February 2, 2009 3:16 pm

Where was flag on Santonio Holmes' celebration?

A Bigger beef I have if I'm a Cardinals fan: why wasn't Harrison ejected after beating the crap out of that guy?  Makes no sense, and Harrison was a big factor on that last drive, as well.

Since: Nov 13, 2008
Posted on: February 2, 2009 2:45 pm

Where was flag on Santonio Holmes' celebration?

Totally agree- refs must have been so busy figuring out if it was a catch that they missed it, but i've seen a lot less get 15 yards... should the ball be considered a prop the same as Joe Horn's sharpie or Chad's (fill in favorite ocho prop here)?  He's supposed to be holding it when he scores, after all- maybe the no-call was payback for all the Gandy holds on Harrison that went unpunished

Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: February 2, 2009 2:16 pm

Where was flag on Santonio Holmes' celebration?

I absolutely agree. The officiating for the whole game was, um, what's a polite word - suspect? (shades of Steelers-Seahawks a couple years ago) - but the on-field drama and great plays nearly overshadowed the refs. Nearly. Unfortunately the final minute was a stark reminder of the lousy officiating that tilted one direction most of the game. Between the non-call on the celebration and the inexplicable decision not to review Warner's "fumble" with five seconds left and the game hanging in the balance, I can see why some people are convinced the NFL is rigged.

I'm not a Cardinals fan but I was watching with a room full of them, and more than the disappointment of coming up short, there was a sense of what-the-hell-just-happened as the Steelers rushed out to quickly snap the ball and the confetti went off and it was over, no replay, no justice, no sense of finality. That's how you end a great Super Bowl? Really? Just left a lousy taste in everyone's mouth, which is too bad - that was too entertaining of a fourth quarter to wind up with any sort of tainted finish.

Boooo, NFL.

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