What’s an NFC Championship Game without a little controversy. In the second quarter of Sunday’s game, Eagles punter Brett Kern seemingly shanked a kick that gave the 49ers great starting field position.
Or so it seemed.
Kern and his teammates were adamant that the punt hit the wire holding up FOX’s SkyCam. There are rules in place in the event something like a camera wire — or that obnoxious video board in Dallas — gets in the way of action on the field.
In order for those rules to take affect, officials need to see evidence that interference occurred. The crew in Philly took a look, but apparently didn’t see anything to suggest a foreign object interfered in the field of play.
It sure seemed like Kern’s punt hit the SkyCam wire, based on his reaction and the reaction of his fellow teammates.
Punters own when they shank a kick, and it’s not often that they try to instantly find excuses as to why things went so badly. If that were the case, every punter would blame a wire for every bad kick they had. The fact that Kern went right to blaming the wire is extremely notable and very telling.
NFL officials on the field or back at league office’s in New York couldn’t find a good angle, though. Twitter sleuths — specifically Eagles fans — had an alternate opinion.
Best memes and Tweets after Brett Kern punt might have hit a wire
There were two types of fans on Twitter after #WireGate: Eagles fans sleuthing for evidence the team was screwed and fans getting jokes off about how bizarre the situation was.
The game was already start to plateau for the Eagles before WireGate, and the next drive for the 49ers didn’t end up doing any damage. But the subsequent events before halftime were decidedly not great for the Eagles; the team almost gave up a safety, the offense went stagnant, and Christian McCaffrey ripped up the defense two drives later resulting in a touchdown.
It wasn’t the wire’s fault all of that happened, but in games as big as the NFC Championship Game, weird things add up in bad ways real fast.