Saints Hand Victory to Falcons with Late Penalties
"I'm telling you it was a flat-out (expletive) call," Haslett said in a remark that is likely to draw a fine from the NFL. He said the Saints ran the same play Atlanta had used a week earlier.
"They didn't call it last week. We were pulling the guy to the outside and you're allowed to pull as long as you're moving forward," he said.
"The guy fell on top of me," Bryant said. "If anything, he should have been called for holding. I was trying to make a play."
Referee Bill Carollo stood behind the call.
"It's considered a pull-and-shoot," Carollo said. "By definition of defensive holding on a field goal kick, two things have to happen. First, he has to have defensive holding and the second player has to shoot into the hole. That's what we called."
A simple but unsatisfactory explanation for the Saints (2-4). Meanwhile, the Falcons (4-2) were happy to get out of San Antonio with a key win over an NFC South division rival.
"You put in your pocket and you get on the plane as fast as you can and you get home," said coach Jim Mora. "And that's what we're going to do."
The Saints and Falcons should still be playing. How do you call a defensive holding penalty, one that had nothing to do with anything, on the Saints' Tony Bryant during a Todd Peterson missed 41-yard field goal? That missed field goal should've ended regulation with the score tied at 31. Instead, Peterson is given another chance, and of course he nails it from 36 yards out. Falcons win.
You can find defensive holding on any field-goal attempt if you want. The referee cannot throw the flag in the spot. Saints coach Jim Haslett has every right to be livid. But then again, these are the Saints, who, before the 41-yard attempt, gave the Falcons five extra yards by inexplicably having 12 men on the field. You can't make it up.
Let's hear what Jim Haslett has to say:
"This was probably one of our better-played games," Haslett said. "But when you turn the ball over three times that lead directly to 21 points, those are the things that kill you. Those things are hard to overcome." And that doesn't mention another penalty before the game-winning field goal. On the play prior to the New Orleans defensive-holding penalty, the ball was moved five yards closer because the Saints had 12 players on the field.
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"You guys haven't played worth a crap all day long. These guys have been beating you like dogs. But you know what, none of that matters. We have the ball with less than a minute to go. Erase everything that happened before this moment in your mind. Come on guys, you're superstars. Go win this ballgame!"
Now, I want to see a defense defend against that better than the Saints did. Honestly, I don't think more than 5 defensive units in the entire league could have stopped these guys from atleast scoring a field goal. Nearly every defense gets torn to shreads when they play against a 2-minute offense. Even the Saints offense can march down the field in the 2-minute drill.
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