James Bradberry and the Philadelphia Eagles were going tit-for-tat with the Kansas City Chiefs throughout Super Bowl LVII in Arizona Sunday night.
Philadelphia had opened up a 10-point halftime lead before Patrick Mahomes and his Chiefs started to do their thing on offense in the second half.
In what was a back-and-forth game between the two-best teams in the NFL, it appears that officials on hand inside State Farm Stadium wanted to get involved in the headlines.
Kansas City was facing a third-and-8 from the Eagles’ 15-yard-line with less than two minutes remaining. If Philadelphia was able to stop the Chiefs on that play, it would’ve given Jalen Hurts time to make history with a game-winning touchdown drive.
Instead, officials called a defensive holding penalty on James Bradberry. It truly was a questionable call against the Pro Bowl cornerback.
There’s a lot of different layers to this. Football purists will say that you call holding no matter the situation at hand. If it’s a penalty in the first quarter of a preseason game, it’s also a penalty late in the Super Bowl.
Others will argue that officials have to let them play in such a crucial situation. You can be the judge as it does appear that James Bradberry had some grip on the jersey after Smith-Schuster made his first break.
This will be up for debate for some time after what was an epic battle between Kansas City and Philadelphia.
Instead of the Eagles getting the ball back with over 90 seconds remaining and down by three points, Kansas City was able to run the clock down and kick the game-winning field goal with just eight seconds left.
Regardless of where you stand on the debate, the NFL didn’t want to see an epic Super Bowl end in this manner. We’re sure James Bradberry agrees.