There were 47 seconds remaining in the game when quarterback Joe Flacco scrambled around like a duck during hunting season. As he approached the line of scrimmage, Flacco arched a deep pass toward Steve Smith. The veteran receiver shed George Iloka and avoided Reggie Nelson, sprinting into the endzone to give Baltimore a touchdown and 30-27 lead with 32 seconds remaining in the game.
Offensive pass interference.
Had the offensive pass interference not been called, Steve Smith easily walked into the end zone (did anyone else notice that Reggie Nelson was directing defenders away from Smith so Cincinnati would've gotten the football back with over 30 seconds) giving Baltimore a 30-27 lead. It would have been difficult, though not impossible, for Cincinnati to match.
However pass interference was called.
Baltimore was pushed back to their own ten-yard line. Two plays later, the Bengals took a knee to claim the win.
Following the game, Smith told reporters that he's not mad, upset or even frustrated but admitted a dislike for a game being determined like that. Head coach John Harbaugh refused to answer any questions related to that play... obviously due to an alarming amount of curse words that were pending in his mind.
Safety George Iloka, who was interfered on the play, completely, absolutely, positively agreed with the call.
More from Iloka on the P.I. call. "That was a great call. It takes guts to make that call." #Bengals— Jay Morrison (@JayMorrisonCMG) October 26, 2014
George Iloka on Steve Smith pass interference: "I saw the ball. Waiting for the jump ball and (he) didn't allow me to jump...he pushed me."— Joe Danneman (@FOX19Joe) October 26, 2014
My admission is this: Had the roles been reversed and Cincinnati's game-winning touchdown was called back on THAT play, it would be hard to agree with a call like that.