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Posted at 11:10 AM ET, 01/11/2011

The tuck rule: Mike Pereira doesn't like it

By Cindy Boren

Ah, the tuck rule. It reared its pinched, troll-like little face again Saturday in the playoff game between the Kansas City Chiefs and Baltimore Ravens.

For the record, Rule 3, Section 2 states:

When a team 'A' player (passer) is holding the ball to pass it forward, any intentional forward movement of his hand starts the forward pass, even if the player loses possession of the ball as he attempting to tuck it back toward his body.

The consequences were less cataclysmic than they were in the playoff game between the Oakland Raiders and New England Patriots in 2002, but it raised discussion of the rule, which is really only popular with Tom Brady.

Now, it turns out, someone who really doesn't like the rule is Mike Pereira, who was the NFL director of officiating and vice-president thereof over the previous decade. Now a Fox analyst, Pereira wrote:

This was the classic tuck play.
This was clearly a correct reversal, but is it time to look at this rule because [Chiefs quarterback Matt] Cassel was not attempting to pass the ball when it came loose.
I think it's time to change this rule. A pass should only be ruled incomplete if the ball comes loose in the actual act of passing the ball. If it comes loose in the tucking motion, then it should be a fumble.
I would support a rule change, although it took me a long time to get to this point. I'm sure it's no consolation to the many Raiders fans around the country.

By Cindy Boren  | January 11, 2011; 11:10 AM ET
Categories:  NFL  
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I thought the same thing watching the game on Sunday. If the ball doesn't actually leave the QB's hand until it's knocked out via direct contact with an opposing player, how does that constitute a pass??

Posted by: chombie13 | January 11, 2011 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Well said, chombie.

Posted by: Aerowaz | January 11, 2011 5:14 PM | Report abuse

a total BS rule.

Posted by: DCFanatic | January 11, 2011 6:44 PM | Report abuse

So now those "great officials" (NOT) are to determine the "intent" of the QB. Hill, they can't even spot a blatant holding call next to the QB. Even in slo-mo, the "booth officials" can't get it right.

Posted by: pjohn2 | January 12, 2011 8:32 AM | Report abuse

I have read the rule and agree 'if the players drops or looses the ball while bringing the ball back' etc. etc... call it an incomplete pass. However, when the ball is lost due to a hit by a defender that should be a fumble. I have seem this happen a number of times and have no problem with that. I don't mind the rule just the way in these cases how I feel the wrong interpertation has been applied. If you want to say it doesn't matter even if the ball is lost due to a hit by a defender then put that in the rule also... that's how it was applied in these cases which is BULL!!! IMHO

Posted by: ELPW | January 16, 2011 5:45 PM | Report abuse

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