Patriots coach Bill Belichick just concluded his day-after press conference and after a quick review of his general thoughts on Sunday night’s loss, he began a statement/explanation of his behavior after the Ravens’ game-winning field goal.
Belichick pursued one of the officials after the game and appeared to touch him in an effort to gain his attention.
Here is the full text of what he said:
I’ve been asked about the situation at the end of the game, so I’m just going to take a couple of minutes to explain that, and then that will be the end of it.
On the final kick, after we took the timeout and rushed the kick, from the sideline I saw the ball go pretty close to the upright, couldn’t obviously tell from where I was at where exactly it went but I saw players waving that it was no good, then I saw the officials give the signal that it was good, and I just wasn’t sure from where I was standing whether the ball, when it went over the crossbar, was above the upright or in between or not in between the upright. So by rule if the ball isn’t over the crossbar and it’s either inside or outside of the upright, that’s reviewable; if it’s over the crossbar, over the top of the upright rather, then it’s not reviewable, but I couldn’t tell from my angle when the ball crossed the crossbar where it was, so I didn’t know whether that play was going to be under review or whether it wasn’t, so when the game was over I went out and I was really looking for an explanation from the officials as to whether or not the play was under review, I did try to get the official’s attention as he was coming off the field to ask that but I really wasn’t able to ask that.
I’ve coached in this league a long time and I’ve never been penalized, never had any incidents with officials or anything like that, I have never meant any disrespect or in any way tried to abuse or be disrespectful to the officials and the job that they do. I was trying to get an explanation for obviously an important call, play in that game and that’s the number one thing between coaches and officials that’s always in the forefront is communication of what’s going on, what’s happening.
As many of you know I’ve been involved in something like this before, in 2000, here in Foxborough, with Johnny Grier was the referee and Drew (Bledsoe) was trying to throw a pass at the end of the game against Miami and the it was ruled a fumble, the clock ran out, the game was over, and then as I was walking off the field with Johnny at that time I talked to him about, ‘this seems like an incomplete pass, there should be more time on the clock, we should have another play here.’ [Grier responded] ‘No, that’s the ruling, the game’s over.’ We go back into the locker room, 10 minutes or so later, Johnny comes back and says they’re reviewing the play, we may have to go back out and finish the game. About five minutes after that, when the players got dressed we came back out for a final play in that game. So I’ve been through a situation at the end of the game where it’s over but it’s not over, that type of thing, and that was really the situation last night.
So…I was trying to get the official’s attention to get an explanation on it, and in no way was I ever trying to do anything other than that. So, I have nothing further to add about that situation, but that’s what happened. Anything on the Ravens?
Many have speculated Belichick could face a fine for the incident. ESPN reported that Broncos head coach John Fox and defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio would be fined $30,000 and $25,000, respectively, for their criticism of officials following last Monday night’s game vs. the Falcons.