MIAMI GARDENS — Jordan Phillips sacked Ryan Fitzpatrick on what appeared to be a safety in the fourth quarter.
The Dolphins were trailing the Bucs 20-13 on Sunday at Hard Rock Stadium and it could have been a pivotal moment. But officials ruled the play a seven-yard sack and ruled Fitzpatrick down at the 1-yard line.
Dolphins coach Adam Gase challenged the call and it appeared to be an excellent challenge.
“We felt like (Fitzpatrick) ran into his own (offensive lineman) and by the time we touched him that he was in the end zone,” Gase said. “We thought we’d take a shot with the challenge, and it didn’t turn out the way we wanted.”
The NFL’s former head of officials, Mike Pereira, said on Fox, after the ruling: “I really question them staying with that call.”
In the Dolphins locker room, there was some dismay about the call.
“Watching the replay, my personal opinion is that it should have been a safety but I don’t make the call,” Ndamukong Suh said. “It’s not my business to worry about that.”
“I thought it was a safety,” said Cameron Wake, who was pushing a Bucs linemen back into the end zone on the play. “They don’t talk to me very much do I don’t know. I saw the replay and it looks like safety to me. But, it wasn’t. So, moving on.”
Another Dolphin was muttering that the league will likely apologize for the mistake, but that it won’t matter.
After a punt, the Dolphins took over the ball at the Tampa 43-yard line, but that drive stalled with no points after Damien Williams was stopped on a 4th-and-1 at the Bucs’ 34.
“We just control what we can control,” safety Reshad Jones said. “We can’t ref the game and be players. The refs made the call and it is what it is.”