What looked like a good play by Indianapolis Colts receiver Marcus Johnson on Sunday to adjust and knock an underthrown Philip Rivers pass out of the hands of cornerback Marcus Peters was overturned after review, giving the ball back to the Baltimore Ravens.
The call on the field was an incompletion. After Johnson knocked the ball out of Peters’ hands, Johnson didn’t break for the ball, assuming his effort forced an incompletion. But that gave the Ravens a clear recovery on review.
Referees reviewed the play and overturned the call, saying Peters controlled the ball while taking three steps backward before Johnson caused a fumble.
Rivers opened his comments on it by saying it was a bad throw but clearly didn’t agree with the call.
“It’s gotten so jacked up how the catch rule is,” Rivers said. “No one who has been around football or watched football thought that was a catch, including the guy who caught it. But some guy who has probably never caught a football in his life gets to decide.”
Rivers later added: “I’ll probably get in trouble for saying that about a guy never having thrown a football. They called it an interception, it’s an interception. Bottom line, I shouldn’t have thrown the ball. Throw the ball short and you put it in someone else’s hands.”
NFL senior vice president of officiating Al Riveron said there was “clear and obvious” evidence of Peters establishing possession by controlling the ball for three steps.
The Ravens went on to defeat the Colts 24-10.