Things Got Ugly After Dallas' Wild Playoff Loss

Fans throw trash at referees, and QB Dak Prescott praises them for it
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 17, 2022 6:45 AM CST
Things Got Ugly After Dallas' Wild Playoff Loss
San Francisco 49ers defensive end Charles Omenihu (92) celebrates after sacking Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott during the second half.   (Smiley N. Pool/The Dallas Morning News via AP)

One of the NFL wild-card games over the weekend ended in particularly ugly fashion: Dallas fans peppered the referees with trash as they left the field, and Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott praised the move: "A credit to them," he said, reports the Dallas Morning News. The comment came after Dallas lost to San Francisco, 23-17, thanks to a controversial finish. Dallas was driving for a potentially winning touchdown in the final seconds and made it to the 49ers' 24-yard-line. However, time ran out before the Cowboys could get another play off, and Dallas fans think the refs blew it on that call. (Watch video of the final play.)

By rule, a referee must touch and spot the ball before a play can begin, but an umpire trying to do so collided with Prescott and other players, contributing to the delay in getting the play off, per Sports Illustrated. Thus the game ended without the Cowboys getting one last chance to win. As the players and refs left the field, some fans tossed garbage at them. After the game, Prescott said it was "sad" fans would do that to their own team, but when a member of the media said the garbage appeared to be directed at refs, he changed his tune: "A credit to them, then."

After the game, referee Alex Kemp offered this explanation of what happened with umpire Ramon George: "He collided with the players as he was setting the ball because he was moving it to the proper spot," Kemp said, per Prescott called that "tough to accept." Regardless, the 49ers advanced and will play Green Bay next week. Elsewhere, Buffalo will play Kansas City, Cincinnati will play Tennessee, and Tampa Bay will host the winner of Monday's game between the Cardinals and Rams. (More Dallas Cowboys stories.)

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