Chicago Bears: 9 Observations heading into the toughest stretch of the schedule
Does Eddie Jackson hold the record for most overturned defensive touchdowns?
7. Pass interference calls on the Chicago Bears have been awful and have cost them points
By my very unofficial count, Eddie Jackson is on pace to break the record for most pick-sixes lost to outright bad or very questionable calls by the refs in one season. He has three in six games and two of these were against the Panthers.
Refs correctly identifying pass interference has ironically hit pandemic proportions in 2020. The likely genesis of this pandemic goes back to the 2018 playoffs. Late in the Saints-Rams playoff game, the refs didn’t flag a very obvious pass interference committed by a Rams defender on a Saints wideout. This very likely cost the Saints a trip to the Super Bowl. In the offseason after that game, the NFL rules committee, which included Sean Payton, discussed at length PI calls.
I suspect that this botched call is to blame for the inordinate amount of wrongly called pass interference penalties against defenders and never on offensive players in 2020. Not to mention the fear of more injuries during this pandemic-plagued football season.
I was, particularly, annoyed about bad pass interference calls when Jaylon Johnson was called for a penalty he, absolutely, did not deserve. Panther’s wideout, D.J. Moore put his arm under Jaylon Johnson’s armpit and kept his arm draped across Jaylon’s body as they both jumped up to the ball. I suspect Moore kept his arm there to knock it out of Jaylon’s hands if needed. It is quite obvious that Jaylon did not put the wideout’s arm in this position.
I had predicted the Bears would hold the Panthers to nothing but field goals. This penalty set up the Panthers at the Chicago Bears one yard line and led to their only touchdown. Pagano called a great game using stunts and some five-man blitzes to keep the Panthers out of the end zone with this one unfair exception.
For his excellent game plan and play calls, the Bears defensive coordinator and his guys should have been rewarded with not only a shutout, but also at least one defensive touchdown. On a side note, I was one of few Bears mock draft creators who had the Bears drafting Jaylon Johnson.