The NFL announced that the owners have agreed to allow coaches to throw a red flag and challenge pass interference calls. Starting this season coaches will be able to call for a replay review on offensive and defensive pass interference, and even ask the referees to go back and look at a call they may have missed.
It is the first time since the NFL instituted instant replay that penalties can be reviewed.
The decision comes following a missed pass interference call near the end of the NFC Championship game between the New Orleans Saints and the Los Angles Rams. The missed call would have given the Saints an automatic first down. Instead, the Rams got the ball back and managed to tie the game, before eventually winning in overtime.
"There was an owe-it-to-the-game responsibility," Saints head coach Sean Payton said after owners approved the rule change by a vote of 31-1. "And really I mean that. I think it's important that this isn't going to be perfect always. We know that. The mere shape of the ball tells you it's not going to bounce the same way. But these are fouls that the analysts are able to tell us they're the most impactful fouls. I think we got it right."
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