Bucs Busted For “Words,” Not ShiftOctober 22nd, 2012
The servers in the NFL Manhattan offices must have overheated this morning as a result of the mysterious unsportsmanlike penalty call on the Bucs, which negated a Saints field goal attempt and instead set up a Saints touchdown.
Oh, and the Saints won by a touchdown Sunday.
The NFL has “clarified,” in the words of Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times, what happened on the play in question.
According to league spokesman Jon Zimmer, “Tampa Bay was penalized yesterday for Unsportsmanlike Conduct for using disconcerting signals, defined as ‘words designed to disconcert an offensive team at the snap,’ in Rule 12, Section 3, Article 1 of the NFL rule book.
And the NFL also specified the words came from Mason Foster, per Stroud.
So there you have it. The shift, which Bucs coach Greg Schiano maintained was legal, was legal, per the NFL.
Just whatever Foster said wasn’t.
Bucs fans can now rest. The issue is over.