Officials miss obvious Orlando Brown hold on crucial Joseph Ossai penalty
With 17 seconds left in the AFC Championship game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Cincinnati Bengals, Patrick Mahomes scrambled to his right on third-and-4 from the Cincinnati 47-yard line, trying to get the ball sa far as possible so that Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker might be able to break the game’s 20-20 tie, and send Kansas City back to the Super Bowl for the third time in four seasons.
Butker was able to make a 45-yard field goal with three seconds left in the game to do just that, but the Chiefs were greatly aided by this unnecessary roughness penalty called on Cincinnati rookie linebacker Joseph Ossai, who pushed Mahomes after he was already out of bounds. .
Joseph Ossai played a hell of a game and was hustling crazy on this play. Terrible way to go out. Hope his guys have his back. pic.twitter.com/xGoT2X8VUQ
— Hayden Winks (@HaydenWinks) January 30, 2023
That penalty took the ball all the way down to the Cincinnati 27-yard line, making Butker’s game-winner an eventual reality. And for all the “interesting” calls referee Ron Torbert’s crew did and did not make in this game, that one was legitimate.
However, there was a non-call on that very same play that could have changed the complexion of the game, and the Super Bowl, had it been called — which it clearly should have been.
If you watch Chiefs left tackle Orlando Brown hook Bengals edge-rusher Trey Hendrickson around the neck as the play developed… well, that’s about as clear a holding penalty as you’ll ever see.
Yes, this was very clearly an uncalled hold on Orlando Brown on the same play as the Joseph Ossai penalty. pic.twitter.com/yPy0rFCjfu
— Doug Farrar ✍ (@NFL_DougFarrar) January 30, 2023
Has the penalty been called, the Chiefs would have faced third-and-14 10 yards back from the start of the play, and at that point, barring a Patrick Mahomes miracle (which is never entirely out of the question), we’re playing for overtime here.
Did Ossai make a rookie mistake? Absolutely. But Torbert and his crew are an alleged “all-star” team with decades of combined experience. What would their excuses be for missing a hold this blatantly obvious?