Jimmy Graham controversial first down: Aaron Rodgers, Pete Carroll and Davante Adams all have opinions
This call ultimately decided the Seahawks-Packers playoff game late in the fourth quarter
It's a ruling that Seattle Seahawks fans will be discussing all offseason. Facing a third-and-9 with under two minutes remaining in the game, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers found former Seahawks tight end Jimmy Graham across the middle of the field. He was taken down right at the supposed first-down yard line.
The officials ruled that Graham acquired the first down, and spent time reviewing the play. They came to the conclusion that Graham did indeed convert the first down, and with the Packers up five points and the Seahawks possessing just one timeout, it put the game out of reach for Seattle.
Check out the big play here:
Naturally, Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll felt as though he had been wronged, and voiced his frustration with the officials after they had made their final ruling.
Following the game, Carroll told reporters that he thought Graham was short and that his players also believed he was short.
Rodgers, on the other hand, trusted that Graham had gotten the first down, but was hoping that the officials would not "hose" the Packers again.
"When I saw (Graham) celebrating, I was assuming he had gotten it," said Rodgers. "You know, we kind of got hosed on the first quarter one, so I was hoping we didn't get hosed again."
After the Packers scored a touchdown on their first drive of the game, Seahawks tight end Jacob Hollister appeared to fumble after catching a pass from Russell Wilson on the Seahawks' first offensive play. It looked like the Packers recovered the fumble, but the officials ruled Hollister down. Packers head coach Matt LaFleur challenged the play, and it was discovered that Hollister did in fact fumble. Unfortunately, the officials also deemed that there was no evidence of a clear recovery, so possession remained with Seattle.
Back to the controversial first down with Graham, we have to remember that the yellow line we see on television is unofficial. It's not always 100 percent accurate. Packers wide receiver Davante Adams mentioned this in his Instagram story on Monday morning.
It's tough to say one call decided the outcome of a 60-minute game, but the Seahawks would have at least had a chance to win the game. Seattle scored touchdowns on three of its four second-half possessions, and Wilson had the offense rolling after the halftime break.
However, Carrollon fourth-and-11 with just under three minutes remaining in the game, which was the last play the Seahawks would run on offense. Carroll had the decision to put the game in the hands of his superstar quarterback or his inconsistent defense, and he chose the latter.
Either way, no matter if you support the Packers or Seahawks, Graham's first down was definitely questionable.
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