Badly written rules, laws, and regulations tend to come to light at the worst possible time. The NFL’s construction of what is and is not a catch, make no mistake, is a badly written rule. If you think that the Dez Bryant play was a catch, you aren’t necessarily wrong in thinking that.
Four years ago, in my first week working at this website for a NFL game (man, that seems like a long time ago), the Calvin Johnson play happened, and I wrote this, about how the rules on catches were ambiguous as applied to the Calvin Johnson play. They’ve since re-written the rule on catches slightly, but it hasn’t cleared it up much. In fact, as applied to the Bryant catch, it probably muddies the waters.
You may have even seen people (as have sent me messages) that sent a screen grab of Item 1 of Rule…
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