Al Riveron, the NFL’s Vice President of Officiating, said the Seahawks should’ve been penalized while blocking the Vikings field goal attempt in the fourth quarter of Monday night’s loss.
Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner leapt over the Vikings’ line and blocked kicker Dan Bailey’s attempt that could’ve made the score 6-3 with 5 minutes and 38 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
“This is a foul,” Riveron said in the NFL’s weekly officiating video on Friday. “Watch [Wagner], he’s on the line of scrimmage and also stationary, but he’s going to put both hands on a teammate and he’s going to use his teammates to leverage himself to get to the other side.”
An official originally flagged the play, but eventually disregarded an infraction.
Instead of a Vikings first down in the red zone down 6-0, Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson broke free for a 40-yard scramble to ignite an ensuing touchdown drive that made the score 14-0.
“Again, if you use your teammates and/or an opponent to help you get to the other side or in an attempt to block a kick, that is a foul,” Riveron said. “Incidental contact is not considered a foul.”
Mike Zimmer reached out to the league after the 21-7 loss on Monday night to discuss the play. His suspicions were confirmed.
“It was illegal,” special teams coordinator Mike Priefer said Thursday. “I’m sure the young man was doing what he was taught to do. They got away with it. It was a missed call and that happens in football.”