Colts lost yards for mistake on substitution distinction

Discussion in 'Tennessee Titans and NFL Talk' started by NewsGrabber, Nov 17, 2008.

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  1. NewsGrabber

    NewsGrabber Guest

    Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky The Colts crossed paths with an obscure rule wrinkle Sunday, and their mistake cost them a big chunk of field position in their 33-27 win over Houston.

    Indianapolis doesn't have a traditional fullback, but defensive tackle and special teams ace Darrell Reid, who wears No. 95, sometimes reports as eligible and takes on the role.

    Reid was in the game for the offense in that capacity in the second quarter for a third-and-1 play, but Joseph Addai was stopped for no gain.

    Hunter Smith came on to punt and Reid stayed on the field in his usual role -- which is not as an eligible receiver -- as part of the punt team.

    Smith nailed a 53-yard punt that Jacoby Jones had to fair catch, and the Texans were pinned at their own 17-yard line.

    But the Colts drew a flag and a 5-yard penalty for illegal substitution concerning Reid.

    "He either needs to stay at an eligible position on the end of the line or in the backfield or you have to come out," Dungy explained Monday. "You can't go from eligible to ineligible, and that's a quirk in the rules. It's always been that way, and again, it's just not something that we see very much going to our punt team. We practice it and work on it with our field goal team. It just doesn't come up all that much, and it's one that we just blew."

    Smith's second punt sailed 55 yards, but Jones didn't have to fair catch it and found the room for a 39 yard return that put the Texans and Indianapolis' 41-yard line. The 42-yard swing aided Houston, which finished things off with a 1-yard scoring run by Ahman Green to take a 14-3 lead.

    "It would have been really nice if we didn't have to re-punt the one punt," Dungy said. "That was really my fault. It's a situation we look at all the time when we have guys on our short-yardage offense and then we have to kick a field goal. It's not a complicated rule, but one you just have to be on top of that's never come up on our punts before. But, it was the right call and one that we have to avoid. So, we had to re-punt and that really cost us a lot of field position there, but other than that, our special teams was good."



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