The coach of the Green Bay Packers shared criticisms Monday about a controversial official's call involving a roughing the passer penalty against Clay Matthews that, had it not been called, would have given the Packers a victory over the co-archrival Minnesota Vikings.
"He did what he was coached to do. He tries to brace, the weight distribution," said Mike McCarthy Monday about the call against Matthews that happened despite him striking quarterback Kirk Cousins on a late fourth quarter throw where Matthews' body actually struck Cousins at the exact moment Cousins let the football go.
"They (the referees) saw it differently."
Do not hit quarterbacks high. Do not hit quarterbacks low. Do not hit them in the midriff. Roughing the passer on Clay Matthews. pic.twitter.com/pFyMnXxqxG— Ollie Connolly (@OllieConnolly) September 16, 2018
Jaire Alexander intercepted the pass which was thrown with 1:45 left. That interception would have led to the Packers downing the ball on offense and a 29-21 win. Instead, the penalty assisted the Vikings' drive that led to their touchdown and two-point conversion which tied the game in regulation. The game ended in a 29-29 tie.
McCarthy said he understood the reason for the increased protection of quarterbacks.
"The goal is for player safety. I think that's number one. Number two, to protect the quarterback, but you have to go further," said McCarthy.
"I'm all for the goal being achieved, but you have to make sure it's not a competitive disadvantage to the pass rusher. Those are quality conversations you can have with the officials."
Watch McCarthy's full Monday news conference below.