Officials perhaps miss penalty on Bucs for removing helmet, might have cost Cowboys points

·2 min read

Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Lavonte David was upset that he didn't catch a third-down interception that was thrown right at him. He took his helmet off and slammed it to the ground. 

A big problem: We're used to that being a penalty in the NFL. 

However, the officials didn't call the infraction, which happened in plain sight. Though they might have had a reason. 

This is from Section 3, Article 1 of the NFL rulebook, which addresses unsportsmanlike conduct: "Removal of his helmet by a player in the field of play or the end zone during a celebration or demonstration, or during a confrontation with a game official or any other player." 

FOX officiating expert Mike Pereira did not think it should have been a penalty. 

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

Had the penalty been called, it would have extended the drive. Instead of kicking a field goal, the Cowboys would have had a first-and-goal at the 9-yard line. Perhaps they wouldn't have scored a touchdown, but it would have been an important opportunity in a high-scoring half. 

The Cowboys made the field goal to take a 16-14 lead, then the Buccaneers answered right back with a touchdown. It was a huge decision if you're Dallas. 

Maybe the officials were too busy worrying about taunting penalties

Lavonte David got away with what looked like a penalty. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Lavonte David got away with what looked like a penalty. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting