What's buzzing:

Shutdown Corner

Bill Belichick puts his hands on an official, can expect serious repercussions

Doug Farrar
Shutdown Corner

View photo



At the end of the Baltimore Ravens' 31-30 win over the New England Patriots, a game that was decided by Justin Tucker's 27-yard field goal as time expired, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick ran onto the field at M&T Bank Stadium, most likely furious that the officiating crew did not review or discuss the fact that Tucker's kick was very close to going on the wrong side of the right upright.

For the record, Rule 11, Section 4, Article 1(c) states that "The entire ball must pass through the vertical plane of the goal, which is the area above the crossbar and between the uprights or, if above the uprights, between their outside edges."

[Wetzel: NFL needs to come down on bullying replacement refs]

Upon further review, the kick appeared to be good (just barely, and field goals that cross over the uprights can't be reviewed), but that wasn't enough for Belichick at the end of a game that was chippy and inconsistently officiated from start to finish.

Right as the game ended, Belichick tried to get the attention of the first official he saw, line judge Ali Shetula, who was running off the field as quickly as possible. He put his hands on Shetula, but Shetula got away.

A video or other embedded content has been hidden. Click here to view it.

"I'm not going to comment about that," Belichick told the media after the fact. "You saw the game. I mean, what did we have, 30 penalties called in the game?"

Well, close. The replacement crew, led by Bruce Hermansen, called 24 penalties for a total of 218 yards. Several fights broke out, and the refs seemed to alternate between letting the players play to a ridiculous degree and throwing flags at everything that moved.

Belichick wasn't the only Pats person cheesed off after the game. This, from New England linebacker Brandon Spikes on his Twitter account:

Can someone please tell these f&^%ing zebras foot locker called and they're needed Back at work !!!! #BreakingPoint

A video or other embedded content has been hidden. Click here to view it.

Back to the coach, though. Considering the focus the NFL put on coaches no longer berating or intimidating the replacement refs, you can bet that the official eluded Belichick far more adeptly than Belichick will elude the league's discipline. Belichick said that he did not expect to be fined. Belichick had best alter his expectations.

[Related: Jim Harbaugh cons refs into bonus challenge]

Earlier this week, the NFL issued a stern edict by memo that no more abusive behavior from players, coaches, or other team employees would be tolerated.

"We contacted [the teams] to remind them that everyone has a responsibility to respect the game," NFL VP of football operations Ray Anderson told ESPN's Adam Schefter. "We expect it to be adhered to this weekend and forevermore."

Belichick didn't get the "forevermore" aspect of the memo, and neither did Ravens coach John Harbaugh, who bagged himself an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for walking on the field late in the game to try and call a timeout.

What, Schefter asked, would happen to any coach who broke the new rules? "If someone were to make that mistake, he would be flagged on the field and he would be hearing from our office in a very firm way," Anderson said.

Yep -- Bill Belichick can expect a heavy letter from the NFL on Monday morning. And his wallet will be a lot lighter for his trouble.

Coaches and players had best get used to the way things are -- SI.com's Peter King reported that the NFL and NFL Referees Association met for several hours on Sunday with a federal mediator, and "significant differences" remain between the two sides.

Related NFL video from Yahoo! Sports:

Other popular content on the Yahoo! network:
Brett Favre sees public evidence against Saints as 'just hearsay'
E.J. Manuel keeps Florida State in national title conversation
Guy Boucher uses a hockey stick to throw out a first pitch
Y! News: Beer flows as Oktoberfest begins

Sign up for Yahoo Fantasy Hockey
View Comments (3679)
  • NL West champion Dodgers seek to keep their edge

    The Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres tangle in Game 2 of a three-game series on Wednesday, with the National League West champions seeking to keep their mojo. "It's about playing good baseball," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. It's easy … More »

    AP - Sports - 6 minutes ago
  • Pochettino hails prodigious Son after winning strike

    (Reuters) - Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has praised Son Heung-min for stepping up in Harry Kane's absence, adding that the forward "is on fire" after scoring the winner in Tuesday's 1-0 Champions League victory at CSKA Moscow. … More »

    Reuters - 8 minutes ago
  • Rookie Renfroe hits slam, 3-run HR; Padres beat Dodgers 7-1

    Rookie Renfroe hits slam, 3-run HR; Padres beat Dodgers 7-1

    It appears Petco Park is going to have a hard time holding Hunter Renfroe. The rookie hit his first career grand slam and also had a three-run shot to drive in all the runs for the San Diego Padres in their 7-1 victory against the NL West champion … More »

    AP - Sports - 9 minutes ago
  • Phillies' Howard set for final hacks at Turner Field

    No one is going to hate to see the Atlanta Braves leave Turner Field more than Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard. Howard likely will be in the lineup again Wednesday for the second game of the three-game set that will conclude the … More »

    AP - Sports - 22 minutes ago
  • Giants roll to stay 1 game up in WC race

    Giants roll to stay 1 game up in WC race

    Buster Posey's 1,000th hit came on a home run that bounced off the top of the wall and over. The fan who grabbed the souvenir ball gladly returned it, and Posey offered a bat in trade. Hunter Pence went deep one batter after Posey in the fifth … More »

    AP - Sports - 27 minutes ago