Falcons head coach Mike Smith is to fast on the draw throwing the red flag after a turnover against the Cardinals making the play unable to be reviewed by officials during 2nd half action at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta on Sunday, Nov. 18d, 2012. CURTIS COMPTON / CCOMPTON@AJC.COM
Falcons coach Mike Smith may have cost his team a promising possession.
After Arizona’s Sam Acho knocked the ball away from running back Jason Snelling, Greg Toler appeared to flip the ball back into the field of play and Cardinals safety Reshad Johnson recovered.
Smith tossed his challenge flag when the play was going to be reviewed.
Fox referee analyst Mike Pereira tweeted, “If the challenge flag is thrown before the replay official initiates the review then the play is not reviewable.”
He noted that turnovers are automatically reviewed and that it’s an automatic penalty if a coach throws a challenge flag.
If Toler would have been deemed to be out of bounds, the Falcons would have had the ball at the 27. Instead, Arizona had the ball first-and-10 at their 45.
“We have to find a way for the coach not to throw a challenge flag at the wrong time,” Smith said.
You could see Smith trying to recoup his flag shortly after he made the toss.
“You’ve got lots of people talking in your ear,” Smith said. “It was my mistake. My guys bailed me out today.”
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