NFL Office Intervenes Amid Coin Toss Fiasco In Cowboys-Rams Game
The NFL Officiating department had to get involved following confusion over the coin toss in the Cowboys game against the Rams Sunday.
Dak Prescott was the spokesman for his team during the coin flip and told referee Walt Anderson “we want to kick it.” Anderson asked him again and Prescott responded, “We defer to the second half.” There seemed to be a miscommunication as Anderson said, “Your going to kick.” According to NFL rules, if you say “we’re going to kick,” that means your team kicks off first and you will also have to kick off to begin the second half.
As the game went on Fox Broadcaster Joe Buck communicated to the TV audience what had happened and that Dallas would in fact have to kick off again in the second half. During the break, however, Anderson let both teams know the NFL league office in New York had audio that backed up the Cowboys claim that they wanted to defer to the Rams.
The league office was allowed to intervene, according to the NFL. In the official rule book under Rule 15, Section 3, Article 9, it states, “The replay official and designated members of the officiating department may consult with on-field officials, or conduct a replay review, of game administration issues, including: (a) penalty enforcement; (b) the proper down; (c) spot of a foul; and (d) the game clock.”
NFL Senior Vice President of officiating Al Riveron told ESPN, “It says that we can get involved, replay can, as far as game-administration issues: downs, enforcements, things like that. So, by rule, we can get involved. This is a game-administration issue, not a judgment call, for example. And we have definite audio that refers to deferring.”
Reviewing the tape, it seems Anderson might’ve misheard Prescott. “We wanted to set adversity there instead of on the field, so we could play from behind immediately. Just bad use of words by me. We listened to the audio. We got it figured out. Just wasn’t the cleanest coin flip I’ve been a part of,” Prescott said after a 44-21 victory.
The Cowboys controlled the game for all 60 minutes. Prescott finished with 212 yards passing and two touchdowns. Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard ran for a combined 248 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Next week Dallas heads to Philadelphia in a matchup with the Eagles that could decide the NFC East Champion. Both teams are 7-7.