Despite the Panthers’ 27-22 win over the Saints, Cam Newton was “ticked-off” during his post-game press conference because after a play where he believed he was hit late by Saints’ defensive tackle Tyeler Davison, he was allegedly told by referee Ed Hochili that he’s not old enough to get those type of personal foul calls.
It appears that while discussing the no-call, Hochili said something that took Newton aback.
During his post-game presser Newton discussed the exchange.
Hochili has denied Newton’s claim, but NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino said although he trusts Hochili’s account of the event, there will be an investigation into the exchange.
“I certainly wasn’t there, but I’ve spoken with Ed,” Blandino said. “Ed was adamant that he did not say that. He told me that he said that ‘the difference is you were running.’ I think when you look at the tape it does look like Ed did say that, I think at one point. You can’t see everything that Ed says, but he’s adamant he didn’t say it and I think that’s where we are right now and we’re just going to kind of move on from there.”
“We would do an investigation, see if anybody was mic’d in the area and we’ve had situations in the past where an official said something inappropriate to a player and we’ve disciplined them. So there is a process in place and we would have to go through that process to see if we could pick up what was actually said.”
“Any official could be disciplined if they say something inappropriate and we do not teach that the number of years a player is in the league is going to determine whether a foul is called. It’s the posture that he’s in and was there a violation. So saying something to that effect is certainly something that is not appropriate. Again, Ed is adamant that he didn’t say it and that’s where we are.”
This is something the league must take seriously. Players have been complaining for years that certain quarterbacks (Tom Brady) get calls if someone even breathes on them. Newton is on his way to being one of the league’s brightest stars and for a referee to take this stance is unacceptable. Cam wasn’t mic’d up, so his claims will be hard to prove and for the sake of saving face the league will side with Ed, but based on Newton’s reaction I believe something questionable was said.
H/T: Pro Football Talk