I know, I know, you're tired of hearing about the Calvin Johnson "non-catch" story, right? Well, here's another one. Tom Kowalski of Mlive.com recently posted an article about an interesting tidbit of information regarding the rule according to the NFL rulebook.According to Killer's article and the rulebook, "If a player goes to the ground in the act of catching a pass (with or without contact by an opponent), he must maintain control of the ball after he touches the ground, whether in the field of play or the end zone.''
Here's the interesting part - "goes to the ground in the act of catching a pass'' - because Calvin Johnson did NOT go to the ground in the act of catching a pass. Johnson's "act'' in catching the pass was leaping about five feet in the air to catch the pass.
If Johnson was "going'' to the ground to catch the ball, then it makes much more sense that he has to "maintain control of the ball after he touches the ground.'' But, in Johnson's case, the catch was completed when he landed with both feet on the ground and the ball firmly secured. Johnson then fell back and landed on his butt - still with the ball firmly secured. In Johnson's case, the ground had virtually nothing to do with his act of catching the ball.
Unless, of course, you want to include all of this made-up stuff about continuation, completing the process and/or second acts - things that are NOT in the rule.
Also, when Bill Polian, current Team President of the Indianapolis Colts and co-chairman of the NFL Competition Committee, was asked questions by NFL Network analyst Rich Eisen regarding the rule, he says that "For those of us who know the rule, there's not a lot of confusion." Well, what exactly did he mean by us, anyways? I bet you 90+% of the NFL's recievers probably didn't know about that rule, so he must have been referring to the NFL executives, not personnel. Let me ask you this, if it was Peyton Manning to Reggie Wayne in Superbowl 46 and Wayne made this same game deciding catch, would Bill Polian stand so firmly next to this rule? Would the ref be so quick to change the offical ruling on the field if it was the NFL's most elite duo?