As the NFL's competition committee examines what does or does not constitute a catch, committee member John Mara told ESPN on Tuesday that the group has reached a consensus on some of the most controversial rulings in recent years.
"I think where we are unanimous [are] plays like the Dez Bryant play in Green Bay (in 2015), going to the ground, the Calvin Johnson play from a couple of years ago (in 2010)," Mara, the New York Giants' owner, told the network. "I think all of us agree that those should be completions. So let's write the language to make them completions."
The Bryant play occurred in a playoff game during the 2014 season between the Dallas Cowboys and Green Bay Packers, with just a few minutes remaining in the fourth quarter. The Packers challenged an apparent completion to Bryant on fourth down, and referee Gene Steratore overturned the call. The Packers held on to win 26-21.
Johnson, the former Detroit Lions wide receiver, was the victim of a similar ruling in Week 1 of the 2010 season, when his apparent touchdown catch against the Chicago Bears was overturned and the Lions lost 19-14.
While Mara said the competition committee agrees on those two plays, he told ESPN it has not reached a consensus on the correct call on the recent controversial decision on Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Jesse James, who had a go-ahead fourth-quarter touchdown overturned in a Week 15 loss to the New England Patriots. Mara also said he's unsure whether the committee will have a new catch rule outlined in time to present it at league meetings next month.
"It's easy to say the rule has got to be changed, but coming up with the right language is a challenge," Mara told ESPN.
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