Baker Mayfield criticizes referees for missed calls during Browns vs. Chargers: ‘Forward the fine letter now’
Baker Mayfield is expecting to hear from the NFL soon, as he doesn’t think that the league will be happy with his comments after the Browns’ 47-42 loss to the Chargers on Sunday.
Cleveland’s quarterback ripped into the referees for their performance in Week 5. He claimed that they missed a couple of key pass interference calls that had an impact on the Browns in his postgame press conference.
“Late in the game — might as well forward the fine letter now. We asked the ref on the sideline how the hell he missed that call,” Mayfield said, via The Athletic’s Zac Jackson. “They were shoving [receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones] out of bounds and then [receiver Rashard Higgins] gets grabbed, so there’s two PIs in one play. They didn’t call it.”
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Jackson confirmed that there should have been at least an illegal contact penalty after watching the play that Mayfield mentioned. Peoples-Jones was, in fact, shoved out of bounds.
Also, we just watched it. It was definitely illegal contact against DPJ, which is who Baker wanted first. He came back to Higgins and that’s a PI call you probably don’t get there, but blatant non-call on DPJ right in front of the Browns’ bench.
— Zac Jackson (@AkronJackson) October 11, 2021
As such, Mayfield had reason to be upset. That wasn’t the only questionable penalty that the Browns were whistled for throughout the day. There was one particularly bad pass interference call on defensive back A.J. Green where it appeared that Chargers receiver Mike Williams was the one doing most of the grabbing.
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Myles Garrett said that call was “terrible” after the game.
Another questionable call came on one of the Browns’ final plays of the game. David Njoku appeared to get tripped up by Chargers cornerback Michael Davis on a Hail Mary. The officials didn’t throw a flag.
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The inconsistency from the referees flummoxed and frustrated Mayfield and the Browns. However, at the same time, Mayfield acknowledged that Cleveland needed to do better to emerge from this game victoriously.
“We shouldn’t have even been in that position,” Mayfield said. “We left too many points on the field in the first half. It’s very frustrating that we didn’t do our job well enough to just take the ballgame away. We left it in the hands of somebody else. We have to be better than that.”