Saturday, December 23, 2017
Stepping into the Property Law Prof Blog, we welcome gust bloggers Dave Fagundes (Houston) and Roman Hoyos (Southwestern).
Last NFL Sunday, the two top teams in the AFC—the New England Patriots and the Pittsburgh Steelers—faced off in a pivotal late-season matchup. In the game’s final seconds, Pittsburgh tight end Jesse James (yes that’s his real name) appeared to score a dramatic winning touchdown. But upon further review, as the famous saying goes, the referees reversed the call on the field and ruled that James had not completed a valid catch because he had lost control of the football before and during making contact with the turf. Since then, the NFL rules for what constitutes a completed catch have come under scrutiny, with most observers expressing skepticism of the NFL’s rule that a catch must “survive the ground” to be completed.
In this pair of posts, these two property law professors—Dave Fagundes of the University of Houston Law Center and Roman Hoyos of Southwestern Law School—defend and critique the NFL’s catch rule, respectively, using first possession principles and the famous case of Pierson v. Post. Full disclosure: Dave is a lifelong Patriots fan while Roman is a Steelers diehard, but they both emphasize that their opinions have nothing to do with their football loyalties and are based solely on objective legal analysis.
To get started, here's the play from the NFL's website: http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-game-highlights/0ap3000000894690/Jesse-James-go-ahead-TD-overturned-ruled-incomplete-pass
The posts from each of our guest bloggers are below! Great job, Dave and Roman!