William Correro Column

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Pass interference comes in many phases

Football, as we know it, is all over after the Super Bowl. I really have a hard time counting the Senior Bowl or the Pro Bowl as anything much to see.

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Okay, maybe some of the die-hards might really get into those but it won’t be many. I hope this Super Bowl is as good as some of the playoffs were. I haven’t watched much NFL until the last playoff games but for the most part they were good.

Since the Manning brothers were both out of the running, we were for the Cardinals mainly because no one’s seen that Cardinal head in a Super Bowl ever I don’t think. As in someone different.

Plus, we always watch for number 26, Deshea Townsend, from South Panola, at cornerback for the Steelers. I worked with Deshea at a function last year and he is really a great representative of the good in the NFL. At any rate, we’re all hoping for a good close game.

There were some interesting situations in the Steelers – Eagles playoff game. I saw what should have been a defensive pass interference on an Eagles’ defender covering Santonio Holmes on a pass to the end zone. The DB clearly had Holmes’ arm in what we call a “hook” as the ball was coming in but they passed on it.

When a receiver is working downfield to get to a pass in the air, the defender basically cannot do anything to change the player’s direction in anyway – hold or slow him down or cause him to have to move one way or the other.

This is while he is in the process of covering the offensive player. A “hook” is when the defender grabs the receiver’s arm in a way to keep him from catching the ball. An “arm bar” is when in the process of covering, the defender puts his arm straight out in front of the receiver and impedes him from getting to the ball.

Another is “causing separation” which happens when they are going for the ball and one pushes the other away or causes a separation. If the players are each going up to catch the ball in flight, there is nothing to be called unless one does something to the other in the process.

Both have equal rights to catch the ball. You just can’t do anything to physically stop the other from doing that when the ball is in flight toward them.

Many times the defender and receiver will both go down on a route and then both go down when they get their feet tangled up. That is never called unless one is caught intentionally tripping the other.

And all the hand slapping and touching while they are running the route is always ignored unless – it causes a change in one player’s direction. And in college and pro, the pass has to be catchable for any of the above to matter unless someone was being held illegally. Even if the ball is not catchable, there can still be holding or even a personal foul if there is something really bad. Sure is a lot to keep up with for sure.

Enjoy the Super Bowl and don’t eat too much. Just enough is always the goal.