Replacement ref watches Giants, Panthers f!ght
|Replacement ref watches Giants, Panthers f!ght|
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Perhaps it's fitting Michael Bell's title in Thursday night's game between the New York Giants and Carolina Panthers was "head linesman" because he looked more like a hockey referee than an NFL official as he stood and watched two players grappling on the ground after a play in the first quarter.
Bell did not attempt to break up a wrestling match between Giants cornerback Corey Webster and Panthers wide receiver Steve Smith that began when Webster locked up Smith on a run by Carolina quarterback Cam Newton. Webster pushed Smith to the ground and then Smith rolled on top of Webster. Finally, after about 10 seconds, side judge Steve Hendley and umpire Lemuel Hawkins ran over to help keep the peace as Smith began jawing with linebacker Mathias Kiwanuka.
Neither Webster nor Smith was flagged on the play.
This, of course, all came after the replacement refs were unable to control such post-play chaos in the Denver Broncos vs. Atlanta Falcons and Baltimore Ravens vs. Philadelphia Eagles games last weekend.
"The referees, they're men, I'm not pointing the finger at them, but it'll be much better when we get our guys back. It's about time," Webster told USA TODAY Sports after the Giants' 36-7 victory. "These guys, they're doing the best they can do. We don't point fingers at them. But it'll be a lot better with our guys."
Webster had a cast on his right hand. He broke a bone, he said, and isn't sure when it occurred. It was after the scrum with Smith when he started feeling the pain, though he can't be certain when it occurred. Webster's right hand gripped the collar of Smith's jersey and seemed to make contact with his helmet and facemask late in their tussle.
"I went back out there for a couple of plays and was like, 'I think something's wrong with this hand,' " he said. "They said, 'Let's go do something about it.' I was like, 'Nah, I'm good.' "
Eventually, he went for X-rays that revealed the first broken bone of his life.
As for whether Bell should have acted quickly to break up the f!ght, Webster indicated he'd like the officials to protect the players but also appreciated the chance to take care of his own business.
"Both ways," he said with a laugh.
Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, who was grabbed all night in the opening loss to the Dallas Cowboys, said the officiating is improving.
"They're getting better," he said.
Pierre-Paul saw the way Bell let the Webster-Smith tussle play out. He was on the sideline for that play.
"That's the game of football," he said. "Know to get away from it and play ball."
Perhaps that's what Prince Amukamara should have done on the final play of the third quarter.
The Giants' corner was shoved late by Panthers receiver Louis Murphy. Amukamara didn't like it, so he shoved Murphy back. Amukamara, not Murphy, got flagged.
"I'm actually happy they called a personal foul on me. After that cold-tub deal, it's great to show the public I am pretty tough," Amukamara quipped in reference to the viral video of Pierre-Paul dunking him. "That's totally joking, but you can put that in there."
Giants coach Tom Coughlin wasn't laughing when he saw the flag.
"The second guy always gets caught and that was the case there," Amukamara said, adding: "Hopefully I don't get fined. Do you think I'll get fined for that?"
Replacement ref watches Giants, Panthers f!ght â€“ USATODAY.com
|Latest Sports Hot Topics »||share this topic »|| |
|09-21-2012, 03:27 PM||away - #2|
webster broke his !!ing hand in that scuffle
|09-21-2012, 03:31 PM||away - #3|
they know not to !! with Steve Smith
|09-21-2012, 03:36 PM||away - #4|
webster got man-handled on the play after he pushed smith to the ground
|09-21-2012, 04:16 PM||away - #5|
Steve Smith stays goonin
Fucckin up my Corners Hand
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