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#pounditFriday, January 21, 2022

Watch: Saints robbed of INT due to horrible roughing the passer call

Saints called for roughing

Roughing the passer penalties continue to be a major issue across the NFL, and another bad call proved to be costly for the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

The Tennessee Titans had the ball deep in New Orleans territory when safety Marcus Williams intercepted a Ryan Tannehill pass in the back of the end zone. The pick was negated after Saints linebacker Kaden Elliss was called for roughing the passer.

An official called Elliss for a blow to the head. You can see the play below:

Elliss may have grazed Tannehill’s helmet with his fingers, but that was a blow to the nameplate, not the head. Former NFL official and CBS rules analyst Gene Steratore said the flag should have been picked up.

The Saints were flagged for pass interference a few plays later, which gave Tennessee another first down. Tannehill then scored on a QB sneak.

That may not have been as embarrassing as the roughing penalty that was called against the Saints two weeks ago (video here), but it was much more costly. New Orleans came up with a huge red zone stop and should have gotten the ball. Instead, the officials essentially gifted Tennessee a touchdown.

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