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No change to rule that cost Lions victory

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Posted March 14, 2011 @ 8:34 p.m. ET
By PFW staff

Lions WR Calvin Johnson thought he had a game-winning touchdown in Week One of the 2010 season when he seemed to haul in a long pass with 24 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter against the Bears. Instead, the pass was ruled incomplete, much to the shock of football fans around the country.

Were the same play to happen in 2011, it would still be an incomplete pass. Giants owner John Mara told Newsday that a rule change on the process of a reception will not be discussed by the league's competition committee.

"He catches the ball, that's obvious to everyone who watches the play; he catches the ball and on a technicality it's ruled an incompletion. That's the letter of the law," Lions head coach Jim Schwartz said one day after the game on the play, where Johnson put the ball on the ground after establishing both feet in the endzone.

The way we see it

Many people were shocked that the Johnson "catch" was ruled an incompletion, because it appeared he did everything required to make a catch. But as Schwartz pointed out, the letter of the law stated the play was correctly ruled an incompletion. Now that everyone is familiar with the rule, which wasn't the case last September, it's unlikely there would be as much of an uproar the next time a play like that is made.

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