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Old 11-26-2019, 08:26 PM
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This Week's Patriots Game


Can someone explain what happened at the very end of the Patriots game? Literally, at 0:01? It seems Brady threw a pass to anywhere, I think, expecting the clock to run out for the end of the game. instead, the ref blew the whistle at 0:01s. As I believe I read in the recap, the play was incomplete, and to Brady's surprise, the Pats had to turn the ball over. While nothing happened in the very last play in that 0:01s, Brady says that doesn't mean something couldn't have happened. (As you recall, the score was 13-9 Pats over Cowboys.)

So, how did this happen? Did the ref royally screw up?
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Old 11-26-2019, 09:08 PM
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Typically, the timekeeper stops the clock when a pass like that lands out of bounds. That's what Brady (and everyone who's ever watched the end of a football game) expected to happen. If the clock had been allowed to run until the ball hit the ground (actually a sideline spectator), the game would have been over as time would have expired.

However, for unexplained reasons the timekeeper stopped the clock with the ball still in the air, giving the ball to Dallas on downs. 99 times out of 100 the clock runs out on that page. It's not clear why this time they stopped the clock apparently early. You can judge whether it's a royal screw up.
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Old 11-26-2019, 09:42 PM
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It seems like you have mistakes like that multiple times in any game. It just becomes more obvious when it’s at a critical moment, such as the last second of a close game.
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Old 11-26-2019, 11:24 PM
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Does anybody know if the clock operators are local guys employed by the teams, or are they NFL officials? Because if that clock operator is a Patriots employee, there might be a job about to open up in Foxboro... Nothing came of it, but what if the Cowboys had been able to pull off some crazy last play miracle?
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Old 11-27-2019, 09:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoog View Post
Does anybody know if the clock operators are local guys employed by the teams, or are they NFL officials? Because if that clock operator is a Patriots employee, there might be a job about to open up in Foxboro... Nothing came of it, but what if the Cowboys had been able to pull off some crazy last play miracle?
I found this 4 year old article, which contains the quote:

"Official game time is kept on the stadium scoreboard, which is operated by a league-hired local resident who usually has college football officiating experience."

So it's an NFL employee, but he works at the same stadium all the time, he doesn't travel with the officials. So Kraft & Belichick can't do anything about the 1 second mistake.

Note that according to the NFL rules, the final responsibility for the clock lies with the Line Judge:

"The Line Judge (15-5-2) shall supervise timing of the game, and in case the stadium clock becomes inoperative, or if it is not being operated correctly, he shall take over official timing on the field."

So in theory, the Line Judge could have decided the clock had not been operated correctly and run out the clock.
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