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Super Bowl Holding Penalty No-Call


Stashed in: 49ers!, Jim Harbaugh, 49ers

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The 49ers were five yards away from winning Superbowl 47.

Tony Manfred writes:

They had 2nd and goal at the two-minute warning. But the Ravens stopped them three-straight times, including an incomplete pass on 4th down when wide receiver Michael Crabtree may or may not have been held.

Crabtree joined his coach in saying it was a botched call. Here's what he told Yahoo!:

"I thought it was a missed call. ... [The referee] missed two or three in the game but that was it right there, the Super Bowl was right there.

"I don't want to talk about it. I don't want to think about it. I don't know, man. What do you think? I thought it was holding."

The 49ers do have a legitimate complaint. Based on the letter of the law, the referees could have called holding on Jimmy Smith for grabbing Crabtree's jersey while the ball was in the air.

But it wasn't blatant, Kaepernick threw a terrible pass, and Crabtree didn't do enough to fight through the contact and force the ref to make a call.

Here's the gif of the play action:

Super Bowl Holding Penalty No-Call gif

Poor Jim Harbaugh looks emotionally exhausted:

Jim Harbaugh Irate Super Bowl 47 2013 Penalty No-Call gif

That's the key wording right there: 49ers were five yards away from winning Superbowl 47.  Within 5 yards in the final couple minutes is a pretty safe no call.  

I keep going over the last few 49ers plays in my head. They should have employed the power run more.

See: Jim Harbaugh's flaw in 2009 repeats in 2013 Super Bowl.

With five yards to go, and a power run game that had brought you back from the brink, why would you try to pass your way into the end zone for those final 5 yards?

what people fail to mention is Crabtree's hand pushing down on Smith's helmet. You can definitely see without doubt that Crabtree was pushing Jimmy Smith in the head and facemask. If you call holding on that then you can definitely call illegal hands to the face on Crabtree.

Abdi, thanks for explaining.

I believe this is why the ref was so sure of the penalty no-call.

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