Stephen Jones: Competition committee will review completed-catch rule
Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones is a member of the NFL’s competition committee and says he fully expects the committee to review the rules on what constitutes a completed catch, now that Dez Bryant’s spectacular no-grab on Sunday is part of a portfolio of other phenomenal receptions that were ruled incomplete.
"I know there’s a lot of work put into it because of the controversy," Jones told 105.3 The Fan [KRLD-FM] on Monday. "I know it will probably come under a bigger magnifying glass. But it’s something we go over every year and I know we’ll do it extensively again."
Bryant made an apparent 31-yard catch for the Cowboys on a fourth-and-2 against the Green Bay Packers in Sunday’s NFC Divisional Playoff at Lambeau Field. However, upon a Green Bay challenge, referee Gene Steratore overturned the catch, saying the wide receiver didn’t make a football move before falling to the ground and the ball popping loose. Therefore, the pass was incomplete.
Dallas lost its final possession, and ultimately the game, 26-21.
Jones called that play — along with Calvin Johnson’s would-be game-winning touchdown in Week 1 of 2010 in Chicago — "two (of the) toughest ones of all."
"Those are … really difficult, and when you see others, they don’t look like catches because right as their feet are hitting or right after their feet are hitting, they’re just catching it and they’re getting hit and the ball’s coming loose," Jones said. "Or they’re jumping up in the air in the end zone and ball’s coming out as they hit the ground. You know, there’s some easy ones. So, you know, the difficulty is just trying to clarify."
The Cowboys front office boss gives credit to NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino and his staff for dealing with the complexity of the rule. Jones also does not expect any communication from the league office overruling Steratore’s decision on Bryant’s catch.
"I want to be sure I’m clear here: Whether they called a catch or a no-catch, there’s still a lot of football left to be played, and we certainly had a chance to win that game regardless of how that catch was ruled," Jones said.
Steratore was the referee for the Lions-Bears game on Sept. 12, 2010, that featured the Johnson catch in question.
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