The "temporary emergency injunction" was filed last week, prior to the Chargers' playoff victory at the Cincinnati Bengals, by Daniel L. Spuck of Mercer, Pa. — which is about an hour north of Pittsburgh — claiming that the Chargers should not have been in the postseason because of a missed call in the game between the Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs in the final week of the regular season.
An added layer of intrigue to the story: It's believed that Spuck filed the injunction from prison. Online court records indicate that it was sent via inmate mail from the Pennsylvania corrections department, and that the plaintiff has not submitted a filing fee or requested a waiver.
The Chargers won in overtime of that game after officials failed to call an illegal alignment formation on what was a missed Chiefs field-goal attempt at the end of regulation. Had Chiefs kicker Ryan Succop made the kick — or the re-kick that should have been allowed with the penalty — the Pittsburgh Steelers, and not the Chargers, would have gone to the postseason as the final AFC wild-card team.
The chances of this injunction happening, naturally, are next to zero. But it is interesting to note just how far some fans — and we'll assume Mr. Spuck roots for the nearby Steelers — are willing to go to support their team.
Spuck suggests a few possible ways to alleviate the referees' apparent misdoing. He believes the NFL can suspend the playoffs for a week to 10 days and allow Succop to try his kick again, or the league can allow the Steelers and Chargers to play at a neutral site — for what it's worth, the midpoint between the cities would be somewhere close to Elk City, Okla., and Big Elk Stadium is currently open for use — to determine who plays on.
Granted, this has all been mucked up by the Chargers beating the Bengals. But it's an interesting and colorful suggestion, from prison, nonetheless.
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- Sports & Recreation
- American Football
- San Diego Chargers
- Kansas City Chiefs
- Cincinnati Bengals