Early on in the game, there was a moment that heavily favored the Philadelphia Eagles. However, the San Francisco 49ers didn’t challenge the play.
It was an odd decision in the heat of the moment, as the replay of DeVonta Smith’s one-handed snag would have likely been ruled incomplete if the red flag was thrown.
Now, head coach Kyle Shanahan reveals the reason why he didn’t challenge the play. According to USA Today, the 49ers head coach claims him and his team didn’t see the same camera angles to reveal if the ball was completed or not.
Kyle Shanahan explains, “Because the replay we saw didn’t definitively show that. We saw one up on the scoreboard. I wasn’t going to throw one anyways just to hope to take the chance. But they showed one up on the scoreboard that didn’t have all those angles you guys saw. That looked like a catch and we didn’t want to waste a timeout. Which we definitely would have if we didn’t see that. I heard they got a couple other angles and you guys ended up seeing later that it was not a catch.
Well, there you have it. Kyle Shanahan and the 49ers simply didn’t have access to the right angle to properly see the play. You’d think a professional team would have all of the necessary angles for every play, but apparently, that’s not the case.
Due to the fact Kyle Shanahan didn’t throw the challenge flag, the Eagles were able to take an early 7-0 lead. Perhaps if the challenge was called, then the 49ers could have put up a better effort. However, based on how the rest of the game played out, that doesn’t seem likely.
Either way, it’s nice to have a head coach be transparent about what happened on the field.