The "mixed" officiating crew of Referee Jerome Boger in the Las Vegas Raiders and Cincinnati Bengals Wild Card game has been under scrutiny over their questionable officiating performance.
A problematic series of calls highlighted by a controversial whistle might keep the entire crew from officiating another postseason game this season.
"They did not feel that the whistle was blown before the receiver caught the ball,” NFL senior vice president of officiating Walt Anderson said.
"We confirmed with the referee and the crew that on that play -- they got together and talked -- they determined that they had a whistle, but that the whistle for them on the field was blown after the receiver caught the ball," Anderson added, according to a pool report.
“In the moment, no. We heard a whistle; the ref said he was out, then they said it was a touchdown without a review,” Crosby said.
The inadvertent whistle seemed to put the Bengals' drive to a stop when officials believed quarterback Joe Burrow may have stepped out of bounds.
Officials allowed the play to continue, resulting in a 10-yard touchdown reception by Tyler Boyd which gave Cincinnati a 20-6 lead with just under two minutes remaining in the first half on Saturday.
At that time Raiders interim head coach Rich Bisaccia did not get a clear explanation nor did he question the outcome of the call.
“No. The ruling on the field was a touchdown. But we still have to confirm any reviewable aspect of the play. So, we did confirm that the pass was thrown before the quarterback stepped out of bounds. We also determined that the pass was caught in the end zone by the receiver, who was not out of bounds,” Anderson added.
Under Rule 15, Section 4, the inadvertent and/or erroneous whistles are not reviewable under the NFL's current instant replay rules.
The touchdown might have given the Bengals a huge lead towards the half, but the Raiders missed opportunities kept them short of another comeback win.
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