Anyone else remember the 2003 game in Baltimore when the clock stood still?

rjdriver

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I'll never forget it it. I was jumping up and down SCREAMIMG at the TV. There wasn't much coverage or backlash on it either. This wasn't a subjective PI call, this was pure incompetence that literally kep us from running out the clock and winning.

Sadly, the refs haven't got much better 20 years later. Yikes, time goes by fast.

Here's to hoping the Hawks get treated more fairly this time around. Here's a trip down memory lane for anyone interested.


NFL apologizes for clock mismanagement

Nov 25, 2003
By José Miguel Romero
Seattle Times staff reporter
The NFL acknowledged yesterday that its officials made a mistake involving the game clock late in the fourth quarter of Sunday's Seattle-Baltimore game, an error that could have cost the Seahawks a victory in a 44-41 overtime loss to the Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium.
Mike Pereira, the league's director of officiating, issued a statement to the Seahawks explaining what he described as "an administrative error by the officiating crew," with specific mention of the game's referee, Tom White.
With 1:03 to play, and the Seahawks leading 41-38, running back Shaun Alexander ran for 3 yards to the Baltimore 33-yard line. Before that second-down play, the Seahawks sent reserve tackle Floyd Womack into the game as an eligible receiver to have an extra blocker.
Head linesman Ed Camp threw a flag to penalize the Seahawks for illegal substitution, even though Womack had reported his eligibility and White had announced it over his microphone. The false penalty stopped the clock at 58 seconds.
The Ravens had also tried to call their third and final timeout after the run, but they were not charged with it because, according to the NFL statement, "the administrative stoppage of the clock for the penalty flag supersedes a request for a timeout."
Now comes the controversy: The officials waved off the penalty after they concluded Womack had properly reported as an eligible receiver. At that point, White, by league rule, should have reset the play clock to 40 seconds and immediately started the game clock.
After Alexander was stopped for no gain on third down, the Ravens used their final timeout with 44 seconds to play. Then Hasselbeck was stopped on fourth down, and the Ravens took possession with 39 seconds left.
"It was just too bad," Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren said.
No official at the game recognized the error, and the Seahawks initially thought the Ravens had been granted their final timeout on the play. But Pereira's staff, which watches all of the games from league offices, looked into the incident when the Seahawks called his office after the game.
In his postgame conference Sunday, Holmgren said the officials had acknowledged they made a mistake. The final score cannot be overturned, nor any part of the game replayed, and all that can happen in the end is such an acknowledgment.
Had the clock kept running, hypothetically, the Ravens would have had to spend their timeout after the Womack penalty was dismissed. The Seahawks, facing third-and-one, would still have had two more plays to get a first down to run out the clock.
After running the third-down play, the Seahawks would have taken the 40-second play clock down to its final ticks before running their fourth-down play, presuming they had to do so, and a measurement for the first down would have stopped the clock.
Even if Seattle did not make a first down, the Ravens — with no timeouts left — would not have taken possession until 12 or 13 seconds remained on the game clock, Holmgren surmised. Starting from their 33, they would have had to get into field-goal range with no timeouts.
Holmgren said he was playing for that very scenario.
The Ravens, aided by a 44-yard pass interference call on Marcus Trufant, moved the ball 51 yards to the Seattle 16 with four seconds left and kicked the field goal that sent the game into overtime.
Holmgren and Hasselbeck appreciated the gesture from Pereira to admit a mistake, but they said the Seahawks shouldn't have been in such a precarious position in the first place. Baltimore rallied from a 17-point deficit in the fourth quarter to tie.
"You have to give them (the league) credit for being honest," Hasselbeck said. "As players, we realize there were opportunities for us to get it done and the officials never had to be a factor. Maybe they didn't help us out — obviously they didn't — but really it was in our hands."
Said Holmgren: "We had our chances, and we just didn't do it when we needed to do it, and it wound up biting us."
Hasselbeck and Holmgren said they thought Alexander got the first down on his third-down carry, but Hasselbeck wasn't so sure he got it when he tried to surge forward on fourth down. Hasselbeck also said he was choked after that play and that officials saw it, though no penalty was called on the Ravens.
Holmgren also questioned the play before the tying field goal. The Ravens were called for an illegal formation as quarterback Anthony Wright lined up his offense to purposely spike the ball and stop the clock with four seconds left. Holmgren asked if a 10-second runoff of the game clock should have been enforced, which would have ended the game and not allowed the Ravens to kick the field goal.
But officials explained to Holmgren that the clock runoff rule was not enforced because the penalty occurred during the snap rather than before.
José Miguel Romero: 206-464-2409 or [email protected].
 

James in PA

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I was at that friggin game. We were in control and let it slip away. Brutal.
 

HawkRiderFan

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I recall yelling at the tv. I was the one who had Sunday ticket in those days so my place was where the guys gathered. All but one of the guys knew enough to just leave me alone during the second games and not try and talk to me or anything. I was livid.
 

Aircrew

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I remember that game, it was as if the League didn't want either Holmgren, the Seahawk organization, or both to succeed. I lived on the east coast back then, sports media and the average fan I interacted with just refused to take Seattle seriously. The most common take from those groups was that we were a glorified CFL team. Drove me insane.
 

TheLegendOfBoom

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Seattle was clearly in the drivers seat the entire game but the NFL had to step in protect their “babyface” franchise darlings the “2000s Ravens” teams, so they did all they could to impact the game and let Baltimore win.

Just a damn, despicable shame!
 

James in PA

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I remember a couple of Ravens fans giving me some light ribbing after that game but overall they were pretty cool. Nothing like it would've been in Philly or Pittsburgh.
 

BASF

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That was during my sports bar days and this was one of the games that made ne decide that Sunday Ticket was a better decision for me with my temper back then. For the most part the patrons were pretty cool about the loss with a few endangering their lives with their bs. What helped was that Brtiannia Arms was the home of the Bay Area Browns Backers and they were really cool people. They assured me and the antagonists that the Ravens got help a lot from officials those seasons. In the end I drove home in a cold rage daze, not paying attention to anything. Luckily my lizard brain got me home safe, but yeah, that was a hell of a thing.
 

scutterhawk

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That 2003 and 2004 squad had so much potential but blew the most ridiculous of games, especially this one.

That ref got fined for giving the Ravens a 4th timeout, but Seattle never could put this game away. The fix was in
You absolutely cannot win a Referee Stacked game (see the '2005- Seahawks vs. Stealers Bettis-Bowl)
 

seabowl

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The worst loss during the regular season that I ever remember. I also remember the next day, listening to Mike and the Mad dog in New York City on the radio and hearing Mike Francesa say that there were “two phantom pass interference calls against Seattle“. Again, the worst loss I ever remember in the regular season.
 

calinator

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I remember being irritated by the idiot fans of other teams saying "well you shouldn't have let them come back" like it was a valid excuse for blatant BS from the zebras.
 

calinator

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The worst loss during the regular season that I ever remember. I also remember the next day, listening to Mike and the Mad dog in New York City on the radio and hearing Mike Francesa say that there were “two phantom pass interference calls against Seattle“. Again, the worst loss I ever remember in the regular season.
They also blew a 17 point lead against the Rams at home. That definitely hurts more. It's funny how I can remember certain things from 20 years ago but not what I ate for breakfast yesterday lol!
 

FlyingGunHawk

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That 2003 and 2004 squad had so much potential but blew the most ridiculous of games, especially this one.

That ref got fined for giving the Ravens a 4th timeout, but Seattle never could put this game away. The fix was in

Only thing I remember from those squads is how many dropped passes our WR's had and made Hasselbeck and Holmgren lose their collective minds. Hass would throw perfectly spiral passes to them and their hands would turn to wood.
 

jman316

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Ah yes, I remember that game vividly.
I was so pissed off that I stomped around my gf's apartment like a tantruming child and threw something at the TV. That was the moment I realized that I shouldn't let the outcome of a game dictate my demeanor/mood for days on end.

Embarrassing.

I recall thinking, "I'll be those players move on more quickly than I did and end up not giving two sh!ts about the loss the minute they get home."

My blood pressure has thanked me ever since!
 

morgulon1

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You absolutely cannot win a Referee Stacked game (see the '2005- Seahawks vs. Stealers Bettis-Bowl)
Lots of "weird" games in this era. I was tripping watching Mr Hasselbeck simply
Light one of the best defenses of all time up . The only problem was Seattle's defense got lit up by a muppet.
 

morgulon1

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Ah yes, I remember that game vividly.
I was so pissed off that I stomped around my gf's apartment like a tantruming child and threw something at the TV. That was the moment I realized that I shouldn't let the outcome of a game dictate my demeanor/mood for days on end.

Embarrassing.

I recall thinking, "I'll be those players move on more quickly than I did and end up not giving two sh!ts about the loss the minute they get home."

My blood pressure has thanked me ever since!
I had that same moment . I had bought a tickets for my wife and daughter and myself . Hotel, food ,gas , drive from Eastern Washington. Had the flu but battled it out . Seattle plays like garbage
And gets beat by a team they shouldn't have lost to. I'm watching the players laugh , joke around with the visiting team. All happy smiling faces , no one looked like they had just fought for the last 3 hours.

It was at that moment, I decided I would not spend my time , resources to travel and attend the games in person. I used to have season tickets (Kingdome) but it was a different time in my life.
 

evergreen

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They also blew a 17 point lead against the Rams at home. That definitely hurts more. It's funny how I can remember certain things from 20 years ago but not what I ate for breakfast yesterday lol!
That was in 2004. I was there. We were set to run to the exit when Saun got the 3rd and 1 (which he was like 100%) in the 4th. Nope he didn't get it. Rams come back to tie and win in OT. What a suckful drive back to the Gorge. Also saw the Bills game that year. 9-52 I think. I applauded when they onside kicked to open the 2nd half.
But back to the 4 time outs vs. Baltimore, what BS! Also against the Rams in St. Louis we were coming back and gonna win, when the ref took out our wide receiver in the end zone robbing us of a winning td! Could've been 12-4 and playing at home instead of GB!
 
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