NFL players and fans maintain a tense at best relationship with officials. Of course, referees play a crucial role because they help keep athletes safe and ensure they play the game fairly. But sometimes they make ridiculous decisions that cost teams dearly and infuriate viewers.
So today we’ll check out some of the most controversial officiating decisions in NFL history. These calls often knocked franchises out of the playoffs by costing them games. Sometimes they even set cataclysmic events in motion yet the referees still didn’t experience any punishments.
There’s a reason why glass bottles don’t appear at NFL games anymore. The league experienced a harsh lesson in 2001 after enraged Cleveland fans went crazy. The Browns faced Jacksonville in Week 14 and knew that a win would earn them a playoff spot. Everything was on the line but the referees had another plan.
Tim Couch threw a pass to Quincy Morgan and progressed forward. But then one of the most ridiculous decisions in NFL history went down as the officials ruled against the Browns. Their fans launched every missile they could find onto the field and secured their place in infamy (via Fansided).