Gamblers know his name all too well, but let me refresh your brain anyways. Everyone remembers the call — 4th and 10 from Green Bay’s 24-yard line and no timeouts left. Russell Wilson drops back, rolls left and heaves up a “Hail Mary” pass toward Golden Tate in the left corner of the end zone. Tate hauls in the pass along with Packers defensive back M.D. Jennings. Then the suspense settles in for both teams.
Replacement referee Lance Easley was the side judge that night who made the decision that would spark up an endless debate for the rest of the NFL season. Easley ruled in favor of the home team and Seattle walked away with a 14-12 victory on Monday Night Football.
“I’m going, ‘Oh no.’ I’m just praying that when I get to the ball, one of them had just taken it away from the other,” Easley told Seattlepi.com on Friday.
The Tuesday morning headlines would have a field day with this one. Now, Easley would have to get ready for a media firestorm that ensued in the coming weeks. Easley was featured on the NBC’s ‘Today’ Show and CBS’s The NFL Today, just to name a couple. He was quoted as saying he had “no doubt” he made the right call that night.
The whole ordeal was simply a missed call on the field — until those gamblers started making death threats. Easley said some gamblers demanded he pay them back the $10,000 they’d lost because of his call.
“There were a few death threats,” he said, “and many menacing phone calls from Green Bay fans.”
Easley decided to get out of dodge and stay out of the spotlight for awhile — until now.
The current banker decided enough time has passed that he could safely take a trip back to Seattle — for an opera show, that is.
Easley wasn’t in Seattle to reminisce or get another news article posted. He did tell reporters is that he is coming out with a book titled “Making the Call: Living with Your Decisions.” He signed a book deal in February with Barbour Publishing and he’s working on a documentary about the events surrounding the call.
Check out Easley’s blown call below.
Photo via Facebook/Lance Easley