In light of this week’s Sunday Night NFL showdown between the Seattle Seahawks, and Green Bay Packers, today’s Sports & Swag Throwback Thursday moment focuses on the ‘The Fail Mary’. Some even call the play the ‘Inaccurate Reception’. Both names fit well. How can we not remember that infamous Monday Night? The 2012 NFL season began without its regular referees, who were locked out due to a labor dispute. While, there was obviously a huge risk that there would be blown calls by the replacement referees, that might eventually cost a team a game or possibly even a playoff spot, we really had no clue of just how bad some of the calls would actually be. Replacement referees or not, this particular call had to be one of the worst ever made. But, it also made for one of the NFL’s craziest and most talked about moments in recent memory. If you think about it, that play was at least partially responsible for the beginning of one of the NFL’s most underrated rivalries.
On that Monday night, it was the Seahawks last gasp. Trailing 12-7 with just seconds left, Russell Wilson threw the ball up for grabs toward the back of the endzone to give one of his receivers a shot to come down with the ball. The only Seahawk in view was wide receiver, Golden Tate, who was flanked by a sea of white Packers jerseys. Referee, Lance Easley, made the call that Tate came down with the ball, thus scoring the winning touchdown. But, it was clear that Tate not only didn’t catch the ball, but Packers db, M.D. Jennings should have been awarded the interception.
He wasn’t. The play was sent to the replay booth, and the call stood. In hindsight, it may have been for the better, because two days later the lockout was over and the regular refs were on the field the next week. For Packers fans, however, the news couldn’t have been any worse. That news has seemingly gotten worse and worse everytime they’ve squared off against the Seahawks. There was the blowout on the first Thursday of last season, 36-16. Then, there was the epic battle in the NFC Championship Game, when another Wilson pass, this time to Jermaine Kearse broke the hearts of ‘Cheeseheads’ everywhere. It meant a heartbreaking overtime loss for Green Bay, and a trip to Super Bowl 49 for Seattle. What can we look forward to in this next chapter of this epic rivalry? Who knows? It may just be worthy of another Sports & Swag Throwback Thursday moment!