Like everyone else who isn’t a New England Patriots fan or player, the Jacksonville Jaguars were mightily displeased with the officiating throughout their loss to Tom Brady’s team, who drew the fewest penalties by a playoff team in years.
An early whistle erased a likely Jags touchdown that might have put the contest out of reach for New England, and the Patriots benefitted greatly from a questionable pass interference call that gift-wrapped them their first score of the game.
A.J. Buoye, the perpetrator on said pass interference penalty, was also displeased with Danny Amendola’s not being flagged for head-butting Jags safety Tashaun Gipson in the third quarter, and for Stephon Gilmore’s not being flagged for defensive pass interference on this fourth-and-14 play with the Jags trailing late in the fourth quarter.
Notice on this incredible play by Gilmore his left arm pulls Westbrook (intended WR). It’s small, but probably pass interference. It helped him gain leverage. Refs swallow the whistle. pic.twitter.com/t3FBf34gJ7
— Carter Bryant (@CarterthePower) January 21, 2018
“I was pissed because I seen Amendola head-butt the hell out of Gip in front of the ref and you all don’t call nothing?” Bouye said after the 24-20 defeat. “It don’t make no sense, man; it’s a lot of stuff that don’t make no sense. I have a lot of respect for these people in this locker room. They kept fighting; we all kept fighting. We knew there was stuff we couldn’t control, and we kept it close. … I’m going to defend my teammates. You all see it on TV, the one where Amendola head-butted Gip. Right after the whistle was blown. Right in front of them. I’m just asking how you going to let them do that?
“I understand you’re all going to let us play, but we know they’re going to try to instigate stuff. They head-butted my man. C’mon, man.”
Jacksonville had the least-penalized defense in the NFL this season. The team was hit with six penalties for 98 yards. New England was flagged just once, for holding on a kickoff. It’s the fewest penalties for a single team in a playoff game since guess who.
The Patriots were called for 1 penalty against the Jaguars
It is the fewest penalties called on one team in a playoff game since the 2011 AFC Championship… when the Patriots were called for 1 penalty in a win over the Ravens
— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) January 21, 2018
Then there’s this uncalled hold on the play that effectively ended the contest.
— Melina Myers (@melinasphotos) January 21, 2018
Myles Jack, whose fumble recovery likely would have led to a Jaguars touchdown if not for the officials’ blowing the whistle early, was alerted of the penalty disparity after the loss.
“Interesting,” Jack said. “My thoughts on that is … yeah, that’s kind of self-explanatory. I didn’t know that.
“I’ll just say that’s self-explanatory. Interesting. That’s all I’m going to say.”