It’s called the dumbest rule in football for a reason.
But a good way to avoid turning over the ball by fumbling out of your opponent’s end zone is to not try to reach over the pylon while diving for a score.
Yes, Bill Belichick has driven this point home to the point where New England Patriots safeties Devin McCourty and Adrian Phillips were tweeting about their head coach after Cleveland Browns wide receiver Rashard Higgins fumbled through the Kansas City Chiefs’ end zone for a turnover and touchback Sunday in the divisional round of the playoffs.
“Every guy who has played for Bill started screaming at the tv ?DONT REACH IT? ???? -Dmac,” McCourty tweeted.
“Swear I just told wifey we?d have a 20min mtg bout that ??,” Phillips quoted tweeted McCourty.
“???? and rewatch that play again 8 weeks later -Dmac,” McCourty replied.
At least they can laugh about it.
NFL officials missed Chiefs safety Daniel Sorensen hitting Higgins helmet-to-helmet on the fumble.
The missed penalty didn’t help, and the rule is dumb, but Higgins should have had better field awareness.
Judging by McCourty and Phillips’ reactions, Belichick probably wasn’t too pleased when Patriots receiver N’Keal Harry made the same mistake in 2020.