By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — As you might imagine just by looking at him or by speaking to him for 15 seconds, Mike Vrabel is not a huge Twitter guy. He’s only 46 years old, but he definitely comes from the old school. So the pull of social media doesn’t seem to be too strong with him.
Yet with his Titans on their bye week, Vrabel was all atwitter on Sunday night, and he couldn’t help but get into what may qualify as a bit of a bickering match with the NFL.
It came after Travis Kelce made a catch across the middle against the Broncos. The ball was quickly knocked out of his grasp, and officials ruled the play as an incomplete pass. Replay showed that Kelce was verrrry close to gaining possession before losing the ball, so Broncos head coach Vic Fangio challenged the play.
After a review in New York, the call on the field of an incomplete pass was upheld. The official Twitter account of NFL officiating explained that “the third element of a catch — time — was not met.”
Vrabel found that explanation a bit perplexing.
The coach fired off a tweet at that explanation. He didn’t say anything. He merely shared a screen shot of the NFL rules, which don’t exactly mention “time” as the only requirement to complete the catch process.
— Mike Vrabel (@CoachVrabel50) December 6, 2021
An argument could be made that Kelce did have time to tuck the ball away, which seems to be Vrabel’s gripe. At the same time, this was a bang-bang play, and in live speed, it didn’t look like anything close to a fumble. So the call was ultimately right, most likely. But with the Titans involved in a four-way virtual tie atop the AFC standings with the Chiefs, it seems as though Vrabel was hoping for a different result.
(NBC’s rules analyst and former referee Terry McAulay, however, adamantly believes that Vrabel is right.)
That tweet, by the way, was his first since Aug. 18. Prior to that, he tweeted on July 29. He tweeted one other time in July, but didn’t tweet at all in May or June. So clearly, when Vrabel opens up that blue bird app, he really means it.
Fortunately for the officiating crew in Kansas City, Vrabel wasn’t present to throw a challenge flag.
Mike Vrabel dunks the challenge flag 🤣 pic.twitter.com/lGEjiDhuAh
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) November 28, 2021
It’s dangerous when he gets his hands on those things.