The Pittsburgh Steelers lost an overtime game to the Baltimore Ravens in Week 5 at Heinz Field, and while many plays could be looked upon as “game changing” none might have been larger than the roughing the passer call on Ola Adeniyi on the Ravens’ final drive of the fourth quarter.
Facing a 2nd and 8, Lamar Jackson dropped back to pass and as he threw was hit by Adeniyi. The pass fell incomplete, and while everyone in the Heinz Field seats thought the Ravens would be facing a crucial 3rd and 8, they saw some yellow laundry on the ground as Adeniyi was given a personal foul penalty for hitting the quarterback below the knee.
Needless to say, Steelers fans were incensed as they watched the Ravens get 15 yards and a new set of downs. Fans of the black-and-gold weren’t the only ones who thought the call was bad, former NFL official, and Washington, PA native, Gene Steratore thought the call was flat out wrong.
See what he had to say from his verified Twitter account:
I am all for protecting the quarterback, but this is not roughing the passer in #BALvsPIT. From this angle that is clear, but remember the referee is behind the QB. I believe that these types of plays are much less subjective than pass interference and would be easier to review. pic.twitter.com/AaTmgEBXu8— Gene Steratore (@GeneSteratore) October 6, 2019
When you watch the replay, you can see Adeniyi on the sideline visibly upset with himself for hurting his team’s chances of winning. It also prompted this tweet from the second year outside linebacker on Twitter after the game had ended.
Sorry Steeler Nation was just tryna make a play. https://t.co/QaTqogMLci— Olasunkanmi Adeniyi (@Love_Ola_9) October 6, 2019
So what actually happened on the play? Adeniyi said he felt as if he was being pushed from behind, causing him to go lower than he wanted, but ultimately he took full responsibility for his own play and told Kevin Gorman of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review what he thought after the game.
Steelers OLB Ola Adeniyi on the roughing the passer penalty late in the fourth quarter on the Ravens’ game-tying drive to force OT: pic.twitter.com/acJk5KhZJa— Kevin Gorman (@KGorman_Trib) October 7, 2019
The Steelers are now 1-4, and there are many plays which have occurred over the past 5 weeks which would lead directly to the team’s poor start to the season. Adeniyi’s penalty would be just one of the many.
Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black-and-gold as they prepare for the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 6 of the 2019 regular season.