The Tennessee Titans had their own issues on Sunday that prevented them from defeating the Los Angles Rams.
But they also felt that the officiating had a hand in their 27-23 loss.
The signature play of the questionable officiating from Walt Anderson’s crew came on an onside kick where the Titans said the crew marked the ball for play with the Rams not yet on the field to return the kick.
An alert Ryan Succop squibbed the ball and Brynden Trawick recovered it. However, there was a flag thrown that was later picked up.
As for the explanation of the play, Anderson first said the Rams had called timeout – which didn’t make sense coming out of a TV timeout.
Then, he said that the ball had not been marked for play.
The Titans were made to do the kick over and kicked the ball deep.
“It was bad by the refs. They were telling us it was a TV timeout. They were telling us it was a Rams timeout. The referee put the ball down and started the play clock and we ran out there and we kicked the ball. The one ref out there said he didn’t know. It was bad but there ain’t nothing we can do about it,” special teams linebacker Daren Bates said.
Asked to explain what he saw, Succop said he thought he was just being heads up because the ball had been marked for play.
“What I saw was that the ref gave me the signal that it was a live ball, which they always do before you kick off. When I saw that the Rams weren’t out there, I turned around real quick and saw this was an opportunity to steal a possession,” Succop said. “Credit to our guys because they were aware. Obviously that was not called. They did a good job staying onside, they went and recovered it. I’m not exactly sure what the ruling on it was or why it didn’t count. I’ll let Coach (Mike) Mularkey handle that.”
Asked in post-game about the play and Mularkey wouldn’t go there.
“I don’t even want to try and explain what they said,” he said.
The Titans had other beefs with the calls as well. On a run by Todd Gurley to the Titans 1 yard line that set up a touchdown, the Titans hesitated after believing that the Rams had false started.
And on a short punt by Brett Kern, officials said the ball had been partially deflected by the Rams as Kern was leveled by the rush. However, a replay showed that the ball apparently was not touched by the punt rusher.
“The punt wasn’t blocked, the first one,” Mularkey said. “That’s the frustrating part, so it was roughing the punter. He was actually hit both times. It was very inconsistent, and I’ll say this, that’s been about the most consistent thing they’ve done is be inconsistent. Week in, week out, not just here. For us for sure.”
Titans players weren’t enamored by the calls either.
“Honestly, I want to save my money. I don’t feel like being fined.”