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Published on 10/09/2011 at Sun Oct 09 20:49.
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Does anyone want an NFL game to be decided by a Hail Mary pass interference call with zero seconds left on the clock?

No. I don’t, you don’t, John Fox doesn’t, Roger Goodell doesn’t, and your friendly neighborhood referee doesn’t.

Knowing that, if you’re the opposition, and you know there’s no chance you get called for the flag, wouldn’t you throw an illegal shove your opponent’s way? Wouldn’t you push a wide receiver out of the back of the end zone to ensure your team gets the ‘W’? Of course you would.

John Fox

Denver Broncos head coach John Fox reacts during an NFL football game against the San Diego Chargers , Sunday, Oct. 9, 2011, in Denver. (AP Photo/Joe Mahoney)

And that’s exactly what San Diego Chargers CB Dante Hughes did. Blatantly.

With Tim Tebow scrambling to dodge Chargers pursuers for several seconds, Matthew Willis and others were working to get open in the back of the end zone. Hughes and Willis locked up, and Hughes shoved Willis out of the back of the end zone before placing himself in the direct path of Tebow’s football. The ball whistled through a number of hands before bouncing off both Hughes and then off Willis and then off the ground in heartbreaking fashion, ending the game in a Chargers victory.

“I thought I saw [WR] Matt [Willis] in the back of the end zone,” Tebow said after the game. “There were a bunch of guys around, and I tried to give him an opportunity to catch it, but we came up a little short.”

Judge for yourself. Check the pass interference shove at the 0:16 mark in the video below:

I don’t think I can recall a more blatant non-call in my days watching the NFL. Hughes’ shove was deliberate and illegal. Am I mad? Yes. Do I want that one last play on the goal line with Tim Tebow behind center? You’re damn right I do.

But I can’t fault the Chargers. I would’ve done the same thing. This is on the refs for missing the call. No one wants a game decided by a 50-yard flag, and in this situation, I’d want my Broncos to do the same thing. As the old adage goes, “It’s only cheating if you get caught.” And the chances of getting caught there, given the nature of the play with the game on the line, were minimal.

I’m just begging for a chance to repay the favor in San Diego later this year.

(H/T Mile High Report)

  • Gradishar53

    Wow horrible blow call by the refs!

  • Gradishar53

    “blown” that is….

  • Dakota Fan

    That’s right. We got blown on that one. More like hosed…

  • King

    Saw it live and was in disbelief.  The ref’s went to lunch the last play of that game. 

  • Guest

    Offset by the blatant hold on Sean Phillips trying to get to tebow

  • Anonymous

    According to Mike Pereira, it’s not PI because Tebow was outside of the pocket. Apparently, when he does that, it negates any illegal contact penalties.

  • anthony33

    Really?  San Diego had ZERO penalties… really?  

  • Rayhankie

    Refs had bad calls all day!
    Ps I still hate Rich! ” pass with his forearm.” what a clown!

  • Dee Kitchens

    Let’s not forget the drive before when we had them on 3rd down and they called “unsportsmanlike conduct” that gave them the first.

  • Mike Birtwistle

    that was a pretty poor call.  even if it wasn’t PI it was certainly illegal contact.  Why do we have to suffer a bye-week, I wanna get these Broncos on the field tomorrow, its been a long time since Uncle Mo’ wa on the Broncos sideline.  Let’s see if Miami will move the game forward!

  • Ian Henson

    Still reeling from this my friend… 

  • (dee)

    Oh so everyone’s upset at the call?!? I’m upset at wasting 4 games of the season with Orton …  We would have beat Oakland with Tebow, as well as Tennesse, and killed the Bengals … we would be at worst 3-2 and at best 4-1 right now….
    If they start Orton in Miami I’m done with this team.

  • rcsodak

    Before the call “that was a pass”. After the call ” I agree with the refs. That wasn’t a pass”. Douchebag.

  • rcsodak


  • rcsodak


  • Jon

    I really hope the Broncos let Tebow play his game, when he does, he’s a good player. If they try to change him and make him a “good pocket passer” it will ruin him (IMO).

  • Anonymous

    you should write here again

  • organizations

    After sitting through awful times in Carolina with the John Fox style of only throwing the ball on 3rd and “impossible”, I had a feeling that Orton would be short lived.  I am not a big Tebow fan, but I will say that he will fit perfect with the Fox style of offense. 

  • igc

    Ya did?