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Officials miss blatant holding penalty on Seahawks game-winning TD vs. Lions

The officials in the Detroit Lions vs. Seattle Seahawks game missed a blatant hold on the deciding play in overtime.

The Detroit Lions defense didn’t do themselves any favors in Sunday’s 37-31 loss to the Seattle Seahawks, but they didn’t get any help from the officials, either.

It was a puzzling day from the officiating crew, but there wasn’t a more egregious—and costly—error from the referees than on the final play of the game.

Facing a third-and-2 from the Lions’ 6-yard line, Geno Smith scrambled to try and buy more time. Coming from Smith’s right, Lions edge defender Aidan Hutchinson ran an effective bullrush on Seahawks backup right tackle Jake Curhan. As Smith escaped the pocket to the outside, Curhan clearly grabs hold of Hutchinson’s right shoulder, preventing the Lions defender from keeping contain on Smith. That extra half second was all Smith needed to find an open Tyler Lockett for the game-winning touchdown in overtime.

Here’s a look at the hold, specifically:

And here’s a look at the overall play.

Lions coach Dan Campbell refused to comment on the officiating of that play.

“Every crew is different,” Campbell said. “That crew, they call it the way they call it, and we knew that was the crew that normally calls a lot of penalties. That’s up to them. To me, it should have never come down to that. So I’m not using that (as an excuse). I’m not using any of them.”

Campbell has a point. The Lions were in control for much of that game, but two second-half turnovers on offense shifted the game to the Seahawks’ favor. Even a late-game comeback couldn’t stop Seattle.

Still, it’s frustrating to see such an obvious—and impactful—call blatantly missed.

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