NFL officials miss that Eagles punt hits wire
The officials in Sunday’s NFC Championship between the San Francisco 49ers and Philadelphia Eagles missed yet another play in the first quarter.
The Eagles were lined up to punt from their 26 on a 4th-and-10 play while leading 7-0 with 15 seconds left in the first quarter. Brett Kern’s punt appeared to be redirected after he launched the ball, resulting in it going out of bounds at the San Francisco 40.
Brett Kern 34-yd punt + Zech McPhearson illegal use of hands puts the ball at midfield#49ers 0 #Eagles 7 1sᴛ pic.twitter.com/MrxprJIrpz
— Sᴘᴏʀᴛs 24/7 (@Sports_24x7_) January 29, 2023
Both Kern and kicker Jake Elliott immediately started to point and complain that the ball hit an overhead wire used for the sky camera.
In this graphic, you can see the flight of the ball, which seemed to take a turn between the 35-40.
Wire-punt (?) dots!
I actually think you can see the ball change its trajectory. pic.twitter.com/tMsB8oyiOa
— Seth Walder (@SethWalder) January 29, 2023
“We cannot confirm whether the ball hit the wire or not,” the officials said in response to the punt.
The Eagles were called for a hands to the face penalty, which was enforced at the San Francisco 40. The Niners were able to begin their possession at midfield.
Had the officials ruled that the ball hit the wire for the skycam, the down would have replayed.
Between missing this and the DeVonta Smith catch where the ball hit the ground, it was a bad first quarter for the officials.