The Myth Of The Snap Count Violation

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Of the many storylines that came out of the Monday night loss to the Cowboys, perhaps the strangest was the explanation for the botched shotgun exchanges between Cowboys center Phil Costa and Tony Romo.

ESPNDallas.com picked up the story, as proclaimed by Costa and Romo after the game, and suggested that former Cowboys defensive end Stephen Bowen was responsible for the early snaps.

“We’ve got to get the snap thing worked out,” Romo told the media after the game. “Costa said the D-line kept calling out the snap count. We’ll tell the league and see if that’s something that can be fixed because you’re not supposed to be able to do that.”

The next day on a radio show on ESPN 103.3 in Dallas, Costa backed down from the Bowen accusation, but attributed it to a nameless defensive players “barking out the snap count,” on the line.

“[Bowen] wasn’t really doing it, but whoever was doing the snap count or whatever,” he said.  “And y’know, we’re hearing the D-line barking a little bit, and either way, it’s on me.”

So was it an issue that “we’ll tell the league” about, or is it “either way, it’s on me?”  I’ve heard Bowen, and I’ve heard Romo, and they don’t sound anything alike.

Must be those pesky barking spiders on the field.

Sitting in the press box at a game, I’m about as far removed from the action as you are at home, so I can’t say for sure what happened on the field.  But given that these violations are something that officials are trained to look for, and assigned to look for, I had to approach these accusations with a degree of journalistic skepticism.

So I turned to Redskins defensive end Kedric Golston for clarity.

“That’s a flat out lie,” he said, shaking his head.  “That’s just–I mean–I don’t even know where that came from.  I don’t even know why he or anybody else would say that.  Like honestly, like not even joking, that’s just a flat out lie.  Like no, ‘haha’–just no.”

In case anyone was wondering, that’s a no.

Golston went on to explain that he’s seen this before against Dallas.

“That happened when [former center Andre] Gurode was there,” he said.  “That’s been happening for years, where the ball would hit Tony.  And it used to be that he would throw it 30 yards down field for a completion, so everybody’s like “Ooooh!”

Head coach Mike Shanahan addressed the issue in today’s press conference saying:

“The one thing about accusing somebody for doing something like that–especially this year–is that the center is mic’d,” he told the media.  “When the center is mic’d, you’ll go back on the audio and find out if players did say the snap count, and they did not.”

Blame it on the barking spiders.

Regardless of whether it happened or not, this will go down as one of the stranger accusations that I’ve heard from a victorious team.

0 thoughts on “The Myth Of The Snap Count Violation

  1. Well that’s BS. If you want accusations, why were the Redskins the only ones slipping all over the field in the first half? We’ve been there plenty of times so we can’t blame it on the cleats. If not for the suspect footing, Helu would have broke one in the 2nd Quarter for a TD but mysteriously slipped when he stuck his left foot to cut back. Haven’t heard anything on this situation. I guess if you can’t beat em, cheat em…

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  2. RotGut,

    That’s a sorry excuse. Both teams were, OBVIOUSLY, playing on the same field. The reason the Redskins were slipping so much was because it was an open-roof-game and an extremely humid night.The Cowboys, having the right as the home team to decide to play the game with the roof open. That was their choice. The Redskins should have come prepared with cleats with longer spikes. Sorry, but your excuse for the Redskins losing needs a blood transfusion, ASAP. SImply: the best team won (an injury depleted team). Good luck against the Rams this week. You guys should be able to eek a win out against Bradford and CO..

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  3. Idiedforlove – it didn’t read like an excuse for the redskins losing to me. I was also curious why we were slipping around, but I don’t blame the loss on that. And saying they are an “injury depleted team” is lame. Top defensive player, Jenkins was back, Starting QB, starting RB, and at least one quality receiver to go witha pereineal pro bowl tight end- what else did you want? Seeing as how you are not a redskins fan and didn’t even mention your team, I’ll take the “eek out a win” thing with a grain of salt. Especially since all the Cowboys did was “eek out a win” against San Fran and against Washington. I guess you think something magical is going to happen against Detroit.

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  4. Pingback: The Redskins Blog | Slick Footing Launches ‘Turfgate’ Scandal

  5. Pingback: The Redskins Blog | Costa, Bowen Settle ‘Barkgate’ Scandal

  6. Pingback: The Redskins Blog | Hail! Finds The Solution To ‘Turfgate’

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