VIDEO: Following the backlash from last year's NFC Championship Game between the Saints and Rams, the NFL remodeled their Defensive Pass Interference penalty so that Coaches in 2019 could Challenge the call. Well we got our first taste of it last night...
VIA NFL.com: We have history, folks: the first coach's challenge of defensive pass interference in an NFL game.
It came with 3:19 to go in the second quarter of Thursday night's Hall of Fame Game. On first-and-10 from Atlanta's 21-yard line, Falcons quarterback Kurt Benkert launched on a bomb down the near sideline in the direction of receiver Russell Gage. The pass fell incomplete, but Broncos cornerback Linden Stephens was ruled to have interfered with Gage.
After the penalty was announced, Broncos coach Vic Fangio threw the red challenge flag to challenge the call of defensive pass interference on the field.
Referee Walt Anderson went to the video, returned to the field a minute later and ruled that the call would be upheld. First-and-10 for the Falcons at Denver's 36-yard line. One challenge lost for the Broncos.
"I didn't have a great look at it. Obviously it was on the other sideline," Fangio said after the game. "But they did say it stands, so it was pretty close. They didn't say confirmed.
"I'd made the statement that I was going to throw the first challenge flag for a PI, and a couple guys were challenging me to do it there, so I did it."
The whole ordeal was the first time in an NFL game, preseason or regular season, that pass interference was challenged.