NFL Commissioner Goodell says officials did nothing wrong in controversial Cowboys-49ers finale

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Commissioner of the NFL Roger Goodell has said he is happy with how the officials managed the ending to Sunday's dramatic Wild Card game between the Dallas Cowboys and the San Francisco 49ers at AT&T Stadium.

San Francisco won 23-17, though were made to sweat in a rollercoaster finish.

The 49ers appeared to have clinched the game with a fourth-down quarterback sneak from Jimmy Garoppolo. However, a false start penalty negated that play and allowed the Cowboys to gain possession with 32 seconds left.

They moved down to San Francisco's 41-yard line in three plays but the Cowboys then surprisingly called a quarterback run play with Prescott despite having no timeouts left.

That set up a mad dash to spike the ball and prevent time from expiring. However, Dak Prescott handed the ball to center Tyler Biadasz to spot the ball.

NFL rules state the ball must be spotted by an official and umpire Ramon George ran in to do just that, colliding with Prescott and Biadasz in the process and leading to a delay that prevented Prescott from spiking it before the clock hit triple zeros, meaning a potential game-winning Hail Mary never came to fruition.

Speaking in an interview on the NFL Network before Monday's NFC Wild Card game between the Los Angeles Rams and the Arizona Cardinals, Commissioner Goodell said he was satisfied that the right protocol was followed by the officials.

"That's exactly how our officials are taught, that's the mechanic that they use and officiating is all about mechanics and consistency," he said.

"I spoke to our officiating department because I was there at the game and they felt it was handled exactly the way we teach it."

Cowboys quarterback Prescott was less sure about the officials' performance immediately after the game, saying he felt the ball was spiked in time.

"I thought I did [spike the ball in time],” Prescott said. "I didn't hear what the ref said, what their announcement was. I just saw them running off the field and the Niners running on the field and celebrating, so understood what had happened.

"As I was getting behind Tyler, saw four seconds left. I thought there was obviously time to make sure everybody was set, and then honestly, just got hit from behind. Still, when I got up [under center], I saw two seconds. I thought I could get the snap and get it down before time expired. I'm not sure what happened other than that."

In his pool report after the game, referee Alex Kemp insisted umpire George had done everything correctly in spotting the ball.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting