Cards sent plays to NFL: ‘Obvious problems’

Updated: December 2, 2013, 9:44 PM ET


By
Josh Weinfuss | ESPN.com


The Arizona Cardinals sent the NFL about 15 plays following their loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday to show “obvious problems” with the officiating, Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said.

The team followed protocol when it sent the plays to the league’s New York office, Arians added, and it didn’t take long for the NFL to respond. Arians said he started getting answers before Arizona left the Eagles’ visiting locker room after falling 24-21.

But despite their promptness, Arians wasn’t satisfied with the league’s answers.

“I just get madder,” he said Monday. “That’s pretty high. I think that’s considered a problem.”

Among the 15 plays are the holding penalty on rookie safety Tyrann Mathieu in the fourth quarter which negated an interception by Patrick Peterson with 4 minutes left and Arizona trailing, and another holding penalty on linebacker Matt Shaughnessy. On that play, with 1:42 left, Shaughnessy was caught holding tight end James Casey before sacking Eagles quarterback Nick Foles. The sack, which came on third down, would have forced Philly to most likely kick a field goal and give the ball back to Arizona up just six.

Linebacker Daryl Washington received an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty after complaining to the officials about Shaughnessy’s penalty.

Also included, Arians said, was a non-call on what could have been ruled a pass interference on Michael Floyd.

All game, Arizona appeared to fight the refs on both sides of the ball, but the flags were balanced. Arizona was called for six penalties for 55 yards while Philadelphia had five penalties for 48 yards.

By Monday afternoon, Arians still hadn’t received all the answers he was searching for from Dean Blandino, the NFL’s vice president of officiating, but Arians wouldn’t share the ones he did have.

“[He] does a great job as far as being very honest on the calls, and we’ll follow up more with the answers and what will be done and what can be done later,” Arians said. “That’s all I’ll say about the officiating in that ballgame. The proper channels have been followed and there obviously were very, very many problems.”

During his Monday news conference, Arians said he wants the referees to “own up” to the mistakes he believe they made.

“You move on. It’s part of the game,” Arians said. “We’re here working our tails off this week. Those guys are back at their other jobs.”

The loss put the Cardinals at 7-5, tying them with the Eagles, but Philadelphia owns the tiebreaker after Sunday, which could play a factor should a wild-card spot come down to those two teams.

On Sunday, Arians refused to blame the officials for Arizona losing the game, but on Monday he wasn’t shy about saying the officiating could keep Arizona out of the playoffs.

“It possibly could, but I think a lot of things have to happen here in the last four weeks,” he said. “I would hope that we give up all that talk this week and just focus on the St. Louis Rams.”

  • Covered Cardinals for azcardinals.com
  • Received Master’s of Sports Journalism and Bachelor’s degrees from Indiana University

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