Tuck: NFL Pass Interference

Let them play.  Let them play!  I find myself no less than 5 times a Sunday screaming that at a TV screen watching all the games in the NFL.  It has gotten to a point you can’t touch a receiver as a defensive back without drawing a flag.

What makes matters worse it what they allow the receiver to do.  Receivers are allowed to go after the ball, and through/over the defensive player.  Obviously, it does not work the other way around.  And WR often are able to draw a flag just by being aggressive and attempting to go through the defender.  Heck, sometimes they just “act” like they are going after a ball they have no chance of catching and it draws a flag.

Poorly thrown footballs that cannot be caught should not be drawing pass interference penalties.  Defenders are being given little opportunity to make plays on the ball, and what is sometimes most disgraceful is what offensive players can get away with to prevent interceptions.  Offensive pass interference requires two things: Either a push-off that is obvious or a basically tackling the defender who has a bead on the ball.

It is a difficult call for officials to be sure, but it is also the most important flag that can be thrown in a game.  In the NFL, they penalize at the spot of the foul.  It is the only instance you can have have a 50-yard penalty.  That is HUGE.  That is game-changing.

I always liked the spot foul growing up because I didn’t like to see beaten defenders simply take down a receiver far down the field to stop a big gain or prevent a touchdown.  But the longer I’ve watch football, the more I feel like at the rate pass interference is being called and the inconsistency involved in what makes it a penalty, I feel like a change needs to be made to a 15-yard penalty.

Nobody likes seeing officials decide games, and I am not saying all calls are bad calls, but a bad pass interference call is the worst call of all, and anything we can do to limit them would be a good thing for the NFL.