Here’s how referee Jerome Boger explained the N’Keal Harry ruling in the Patriots-Chiefs game

N’Keal Harry was ruled down at the 3 yard line on this play. Jim Davis

Patriots receiver N’Keal Harry was ruled short of the end zone on a play in the fourth quarter Sunday vs the Chiefs, although video replays showed Harry did not step out of bounds before crossing the goal line.

Afterward, ESPN reporter Mike Reiss served as the pool reporter to get an explanation from officiating crew chief Jerome Boger. Here is the exchange as provided by the Patriots media relations department.

Reiss: What led to that not being called a touchdown?

Boger: “What led to it was the covering official on the wing was blocked out by defenders. The downfield official who was on the goal line and looking back toward the field of play had that he stepped out at the three-yard line. So, they got together and conferred on that. The final ruling was that he was out of bounds at the three-yard line.’’

Reiss: When the officials confer like that and you ultimately come in as the lead official, is there any thought to err on the side of touchdown, knowing you would have the benefit of review in that event?

Boger: “Not really. Those two officials who were covering it, they look at it in real time. This case was unique in that the guy who would have ruled touchdown had him short. So maybe if that ruling official on the goal line had a touchdown, we could have gotten into that, but he thought that that guy stepped out of bounds. The goal line wasn’t in the play.’’


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