Social media erupts as refs' blown call gives Colts undeserved chance to beat Bills


I don't want to know what Bills Stadium, surrounding parking lots and the entire city of Buffalo would have looked like had the Colts happened to win on Wild Card weekend.

Fortunately, that wasn't the outcome, and quite frankly, the Colts didn't deserve that outcome. To my eyes and the eyes of fans around the nation, the Colts didn't even deserve the chance for that outcome that they ultimately received from the refs.

With under a minute remaining in Saturday's first of three playoff games, Philip Rivers attempted to continue a game-winning or game-tying drive, finding Zach Pascal deep for a 17-yard completion. Stumbling after making the grab, Pascal appeared to regain his footing and subsequently lose the football as he got back upright. In other words, Pascal quite clearly looked to have fumbled the football.

However, the referees ruled him down by contact and apparently had no intention of reviewing the play. This was strike one for the Twitter audience.

Thanks to Sean McDermott's timeout, the referees did go and review the play. Crisis averted... right? Wrong. The call stood. Strike two.

Former referee Gene Steratore offered his two cents following the play, disagreeing with the on-field officials' assessment of what occurred.

And what would have been strike three is if the Colts had used that undeserved opportunity to drive down the field and kick a field goal to tie the game or — even worse — win it with a touchdown. Fortunately, that didn't happen. The game ended with a Rivers heave toward the end zone that was ultimately broken up by the Bills secondary, sending Buffalo to their first divisional round appearance since 1996.

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