NFL drops the hammer on officials who cost Lions a win against the Cowboys

The officiating crew from Saturday night’s Lions vs Cowboys game could face some form of punishment from the NFL.

The Detroit Lions lost in controversial fashion to the Dallas Cowboys on Saturday night. Dan Campbell opted to go for a two-point conversion and the win after scoring with under a minute remaining in Dallas.

Campbell’s two-point conversion play was a creative one. It was so creative, in fact, that Brad Allen’s crew was fooled as well. Campbell claims he discussed the potential trick play to the crew pregame.

The player who caught the penalized game-winning pass, Taylor Decker, checked with the official prior to the play to ensure he was eligible. Yet, Detroit sent three players at the officials before the play, which ultimately confused Allen’s crew into declaring the wrong player eligible. Yes, it’s a lot.

Per ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the clerical error will cost Allen and his crew in some fashion. While the league will not fine any of the officials involved, it can limit which referees are allowed to officiate postseason games, which comes with a larger paycheck. Given Allen’s crew has been at the center of controversy several times this season, it’s tough to blame Roger Goodell and the league for taking this matter seriously.

A large part of Brad Allen’s crew is not going to be officiating in the postseason,” Schefter said. “They’re going to get downgraded, and the chances are that many of them are not going to be involved in the postseason.”

While it’s nice to see said officials be held accountable to some extent, it won’t provide the Lions a possible home NFC Divisional Round game. Even worse, had the Lions won out and the 49ers lost one of their remaining two contests, Detroit would’ve been in line for the No. 1 seed in the NFC.

Every referee mistake has consequences. While some are a judgement call, and we respect that, this was not. Fans have every right to be upset, and the pool report sure didn’t help matters.