Some NFL scandals are silly because they get out of hand. There was a competitive imbalance in Deflategate, but should it have gotten almost to the U.S. Supreme Court? Probably not.
Other “scandals” just seem silly on their face. The recent one involving Eagles kicker Jake Elliott falls into that category.
GAMING SURVEY: Complete short survey for chance to win international football shirt of your choice!
Elliott was investigated by the NFL for using an item to mark his kicking spot on the field against the Giants in Week 14, something Elliott asserts is a widespread practice and is allowed.
“We’ve always used something that’s within the rules,” Elliott said, per NJ.com. “It’s just literally to mark the spot. It’s part of the playing surface, like a piece of grass or something like that.”
Elliott also said “probably 30 teams” do the same thing.
What was the Jake Elliott investigation about?
The NFL’s investigation of Elliott was reportedly for Elliott marking his kicking spot on the field with a small object next to emergency holder Britain Covey in Week 14 against the Giants.
MORE: Best prop bets for Eagles-49ers NFC championship game
Giants special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey told reporters heading into New York’s divisional round game in Philadelphia it’s helpful if “you leave a visual spot down there,” per the New York Post.
Football Zebras reported Jan. 12 that officials were being told to crack down on “foreign objects” in the kicking game, as it is considered unsportsmanlike conduct to use aids while kicking field goals and extra points.
The site cited Rule 11-4-5: “No article of any type may be placed on the field, or used in any manner, to assist a player in the execution of a field goal and/or [extra-point] attempt.”
Former Giants kicker Lawrence Tynes wasn’t buying into the allegations against Elliott.
I have Jake’s back here. Kickers have been doing this for years. He is not cheating nor is he a cheater, come on man! #NFL #Eagles #NFLPlayoffs https://t.co/nu3a0u2ASw
— Lᴀᴡʀᴇɴᴄᴇ Tʏɴᴇs (@lt4kicks) January 20, 2023
Elliott denied wrongdoing, saying the officials knew what he was doing and that the probe was blown out of proportion.
JAKE ELLIOTT STATS: Longest field goals made, touchback percentage & more
“When we talked to (the league), we explained what we’re doing, and they saw what we were doing,” Elliott said on Jan. 18, via NJ.com. “It’s just a point of emphasis, and someone makes it bigger than it is. Everything we’ve done has been completely legal.”
Elliott made all five of his extra-point kicks and his only field-goal try in the Eagles’ 38-7 playoff victory over the Giants.