Raiders Wild Card vs Bengals: 3 studs, 3 duds from the loss
Duds – The Officials
This was yet another horrendous showing from NFL officials. They made errors all throughout the game and botched several calls for both teams but the Raiders got the short end of the stick as usual.
The most high-profile mistake was a play in the first half where Joe Burrow found a receiver in the back of the end zone but the officials had blown the whistle during the play. The play should have been blown dead but the officials didn’t even acknowledge it at the time.
This would have been an injustice for the Bengals had the officials made them replay the down but that is the rule for a reason. NFL players are supposed to obey the whistle like a divine order and they automatically let up when they hear it. The rule is in place for player safety and the officials just ignored it to perhaps try and avoid more controversy.
There were several other bad calls including some ticky-tack holding calls on the Raiders and a clear completion for Hunter Renfrow that was ruled incomplete after a review. The officials totally mismanaged the game and made themselves the stars of the show. The Raiders didn’t lose the game because of the officials but they certainly hurt their chances.