NFL Thursday Night Football: A Double Punt And A Rams Win

Thursday Night Football’s matchup between the Seattle Seahawks and the Los Angeles Rams looked to be a beauty on paper. 

Russell Wilson vs Matthew Stafford, Pete Carroll vs Sean McVay, major implications for the NFC West. 

Little did we know that we were going to be thrown multiple curveballs. 

The Rams won 26-17 in a game that may not have lived up to the hype, but certainly was one to remember. 

The Wilson vs Stafford matchup would only last three quarters, as Wilson injured his middle finger on his throwing hand in the third, eventually needing to be replaced by backup quarterback Geno Smith. 

Carroll said after the game that Wilson suffered a “badly sprained finger,” and we learned Friday that he’ll undergo an MRI to learn the severity of the injury.

Smith — drafted by the New York Jets in the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft — last started an NFL game in 2017, but performed valiantly in replacing Wilson. 

He led Seattle on a 98-yard touchdown drive in the fourth quarter but threw a game-sealing interception with just over two minutes to go in the fourth quarter.

“Geno did a really, really good job, very much in command,” Carroll said. “We were able to do all kinds of things with him out there. He handled all the communications beautifully and played really well. We had a chance to win a football game. With all of that, we had a chance to win the football game with the ball in our hands and couple minutes to go.”

Stafford had to deal with his own finger injury, saying his index finger “popped out” in the first half. 

“It popped out,” Stafford told Fox after the game. “I don’t really know how, to be honest with you. I just looked down at it. It was on the left a little bit. I threw it back in. Our guys did a great job giving it a little tape. I was able to just kind of keep it warm the rest of the day and keep playing.”

He struggled in the first half, killing a potential scoring drive when he threw an interception in the endzone and ending the half with just 131 yards in the air. But Stafford bounced back in the second half, finishing the night with 365 yards, one interception and a touchdown. 

If two finger injuries to both starting quarterbacks was a strange development, the “double punt” by Seattle punter Michael Dickson was flat out bizarre.  

Toward the end of the third quarter, Seattle was punting from their own 21-yard line, when Dickson’s punt was blocked. What happened next had both the announcers and fans confused as to what transpired. 

Many had never seen such a play before —  including Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, and Fox rules analyst Mike Pereira, who stated that the second kick was illegal. 

But according to Rule 9 of the NFL, “A second kick from behind the line of scrimmage is legal provided the ball has not crossed the line.”

“I’ve never seen anything like a double-punt,” McVay said. “That was … crazy. And then we end up being on the minus-10, I mean, what the hell? My brain doesn’t have … I don’t have the brainpower to explain it.”

“Basically what happened was, because he kicked it still behind the line of scrimmage, they reviewed it in New York and they said his foot was still on the line so it wasn’t totally over the line of scrimmage, so they said he can do that. I said, ‘So you can kick the ball twice, huh?’ I guess you learn something every night.”

It was just one of many strange occurrences Thursday night, but the end result was Los Angeles moving to 4-1 on the year, and remaining one game behind the Arizona Cardinals in the NFC West.  

You have to love sports.

Joe Morgan is the Sports Reporter for The Daily Wire. Most recently, Morgan covered the Clippers, Lakers, and the NBA for Sporting News. Send your sports questions to [email protected].

The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.

The Daily Wire is one of America’s fastest-growing conservative media companies and counter-cultural outlets for news, opinion, and entertainment. Get inside access to The Daily Wire by becoming a member.

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