After Further Review: Jets-Browns Officiating

By popular demand, we're again going to have a post after each game that breaks down some of the controversial decisions from the officiating crew in the game.

Penalty Count

Browns 5-38 (leading to one Jets first down)
Jets 8-57 (leading to two Browns first downs)

Note: This does not include penalties that are declined or off-set.

Plays where the call was obvious, uncontroversial or not visible on broadcast footage

Jets Penalties

  • Connor McGovern, illegal man downfield on a pass play. Broke for the second level a split second before the pass was released. You're allowed to be one yard downfield as the ball is thrown and McGovern was barely at one-and-a-half.
  • Too many men on the field. John Franklin-Myers ran off the field but didn't make it to the sideline before the snap. Penalty was declined anyway due to a first down.
  • Max Mitchell false start. Major miscommunication here, as it looked like multiple players didn't know the snap count but he was the first to move.
  • McGovern illegal downfield again. On the first one, you could have said that maybe Flacco was slow to release the ball, throwing off the timing. On this one, an RPO that saw him make a quick throw to Corey Davis for the first down, McGovern simply fired off the line and blocked a guy three yards downfield as if it was a run blocking assignment.
  • Quincy Williams defensive pass interference. Grabbed the man he was covering on an incomplete pass with the ball in the air, albeit perhaps unnecessarily, so the call was fair.
  • Marcell Harris personal foul after the play following a punt return. There wasn't a good look at this on the broadcast but he seemed to get in a shoving match with someone as the play was going on and then gave the guy one last shove after the play to get the flag.

Browns Penalties

  • Neutral zone infraction against Myles Garrett. Clearly not only jumped a beat before the snap but had lined up with his hand in the neutral zone anyway.
  • David Njoku false start. Just a slight butt-flinch right before the snap - well spotted by the officials.
  • Neutral zone infraction by Jordan Elliott. Again a clear jump a beat before the ball was snapped.

Penalties warranting further discussion or explanation

Jets Penalties

  • Micheal Clemons rushing the passer. A good bull rush rep here, but the offensive lineman used a sprawl technique to get him to overbalance. He was ruled to have dived into the quarterback's knees, although it was more to do with his momentum as he stumbled forwards.
  • Illegal formation penalty that wasn't attributed to an individual player. This looked like it was Garrett Wilsons fault, as he lined up on the line of scrimmage while Tyler Conklin was already on the line. Perhaps the Jets will bench him like they did when Denzel Mims did this.
  • George Fant holding penalty to negate Ace Carter's 24-yard run that would have given the Jets a first-and-goal and a chance to take a fourth quarter lead. This came as Fant had his man blocked cleanly, then released him as the run went outside and appeared to be very harsh as the angles shown on the broadcast seemed to show he basically let go immediately, if he even had a grip of him at all.

Browns Penalties

  • Grant Delpit face mask penalty. While Delpit didn't grab the facemask, he did get his hand caught up in the helmet aperture, removing Carter's helmet at the end of a tackle. That does constitute a face mask violation, and the fact he was already down doesn't matter.
  • Holding penalties on James Hudson and Wyatt Teller to negate a 33-yard run. Hudson grabbed Franklin-Myers' inside arm as the run bounced outside and didn't immediately let go and Teller kept his hands inside as he rode Quincy Williams to the ground at the second level, but had hooked Williams' arm. Moreover, David Bell tripped CJ Mosley from behind on what looked like a bit of a dirty play.

Notable no-calls etc

Here were some of the notable missed calls, controversial moments or review situations:

  • Conklin's apparent first down catch on 3rd-and-one was ruled out of bounds and then upheld by the replay booth. Cleary that should have been complete and it does feel like most other teams would get that call.
  • Lamarcus Joyner was perhaps lucky to get away with a late hit as Jacoby Brissett slid on a first down run. Later in the game, the Browns wanted another late hit on Joyner over by the sideline but he barely hit the guy.
  • Fant seemed to get away with a few potential false starts for stepping back into his stance before the ball was snapped. He also got away with a hold in pass protection as Garrett got around him with a rip move.
  • The Browns had one good kickoff return, but the key block to allow the return man to get to the edge looked like a hold on Tony Adams.
  • Browns fans wanted a facemask call on Quinnen Williams, but he didn't grab the facemask so that was a good no-call.
  • The replay booth overturned a Donovan Peoples-Jones touchdown which the announcers said was "close" but it was laughable that they even called it complete in the first place because it was nowhere near. He didn't catch the ball cleanly and wouldn't have had one foot inbounds, let alone two.
  • Njoku landed well out of bounds on a jump ball to the end zone so that one wasn't close, even by the announcers' standards.
  • Brandin Echols had a key pass breakup where he got away with a slight grab on the receiver's arm before the ball arrived.
  • Amari Cooper had a diving sideline catch after which they snapped the ball quickly, perhaps indicating they felt it might not be a catch. However, this looked good on the broadcast footage.
  • At the end of one run, Hudson literally dragged the back for a few extra yards, which is helping the runner and a 10-yard penalty.
  • Finally, Quincy Williams had a play where one offensive lineman dragged him by the arm into another, who pancaked him and knocked off his helmet. A good tag-team move, but completely illegal.

Let us know what we missed - or misinterpreted - in the comments...