NFL tells Cowboys refs shouldn't have made controversial tripping calls in Patriots win

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There had only been seven tripping penalties called in the NFL this season going into Week 12 and the league informed the Dallas Cowboys on Monday that it should've stayed that way. 

According to multiple reports, the NFL told the Cowboys that the two key tripping penalties called against them in their 13-9 loss to the Patriots on Sunday were incorrect and shouldn't have been called. 

The second call, against Cowboys offensive lineman Travis Frederick on Dallas' drive where they got the ball back at the 8-yard line with 2:38 left in the game, was particularly costly. It wiped out a first-down gain on a pass to Ezekiel Elliott on 3rd-and-1. That drive eventually ended with Cowboys turning the ball over on downs to the Patriots, who ran out all but one second of the clock. 

Reactions such as this on social media were widespread:

The first call, on left tackle Tyron Smith in the first quarter, backed the Cowboys up and eventually led to Matthew Slater's blocked punt, which set up the only touchdown of the game. 

Cowboys All-Pro pass rusher DeMarcus Lawrence expressed his dismay with the calls on Twitter after sounding off in the locker room. 

"Everybody knows there was no such thing [as tripping on those calls]," Lawrence said, via Bleacher Report. "[No foot] was thrown out or that somebody was tripped. They can talk about it in the front office and figure out when they're going to start calling tripping calls, or when that call is even displayed. It's all up to them. They make the rules."

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NFL tells Cowboys refs shouldn't have made controversial tripping calls in Patriots win originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston