The New York Giants had a tough night against the San Francisco 49ers on Thursday Night Football – and the referees didn’t make it any easier.
Just before halftime, Giants defensive lineman Leonard Williams was called for a penalty, which led to a touchdown for the Niners.
The controversial call came with less than two minutes left in the first half when Williams lunged at 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy.
While reviewing the replay, the defender hits Purdy at the right moment, but falls to the ground on the quarterback, resulting in a penalty flag.
In the NFL, the defender cannot use his weight to land on the quarterback if he goes down or there will be a penalty.
Fans protested against the call on the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.
One posted: “It’s literally just a normal tackle.”
A second said: “I’m having a hard time seeing a flag in this piece.”
Another added: “That’s a clean hit and if you say otherwise you’re crazy.”
With a fourth commenting: “That was a pathetic call.”
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TNF commentator Kirk Herbstreit immediately answered the call.
Autumn dispute divided: “Leonard Williams is one-on-one with Aaron Banks and does really well with his hands, and I think it’s the way he landed on Purdy and drew the foul.”
“It wasn’t because he was late, it was because his whole weight was coming down on Purdy.”
A few plays later on the drive, after the penalty gave the 49ers an automatic first down, running back Christian McCaffrey hit a touchdown to extend their lead to 17-3.
The game changed completely after the call and the Giants were never able to overcome their first-half deficit.
With the loss, the G men are now 1-2 this season.
They will look to get back on track in Week 4 on Monday Night Football when they take on the Seattle Seahawks at home at MetLife Stadium.
The game is scheduled for Monday, October 2nd, with kickoff scheduled for 8:15 p.m. ET.