Judge tosses lawsuit seeking redo of controversial Saints-Rams game

Judge tosses lawsuit seeking redo of controversial Saints-Rams game
© Getty

A federal judge on Thursday tossed a lawsuit from two New Orleans Saints fans seeking to compel the NFL to replay part or all of the NFC Championship game after the contest ended in controversy.

The New Orleans Advocate reported that U.S. District Judge Susie Morgan rejected the complaint from Tommy Badeaux and Candis Lambert, who argued that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell should invoke a league rule to replay the game.

Morgan in a 17-page ruling said Saints fans and ticket-holders were not entitled to a court order forcing the league to take action, the Associated Press reported.


The league has been under siege over a missed call in the Jan. 20 game between the Saints and the Los Angeles Rams. Fans, Louisiana politicians and casual observers have insisted the non-call cost the team a trip to the Super Bowl.

Officials did not throw a flag on the Rams for an apparent pass interference and helmet-to-helmet hit in the waning minutes of the game. Had officials assessed a penalty, the Saints could have been able to run down the clock and attempt to win the game in regulation.

Instead, the Rams won in overtime and advanced to the Super Bowl, where they will face the New England Patriots on Sunday. 

Goodell addressed the controversy for the first time on Wednesday, telling reporters that he never seriously weighed calls from some Saints fans to overturn the result of the game.

“That was not a consideration,” he said.

Politicians and Saints owner Gayle Benson have called for the league to examine its replay policies, how it assesses penalties and how it reviews referee performance.

The outrage made its way onto the Senate floor last week when Sen. Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidySenators ask CBO to review options for preventing surprise medical bills Five things to watch for in Trump's 2020 budget Overnight Health Care - Presented by Kidney Care Partners - FDA chief Scott Gottlieb resigns | House Dems to take up drug pricing bills next week | Planned Parenthood, doctors group sue over Trump abortion rule MORE (R-La.) railed against “the most blatant and consequential blown call in NFL history.” 

Rep. Cedric RichmondCedric Levon RichmondMan arrested for allegedly throwing glass of water at Steve King House Dem renews call for censuring Steve King Louisiana rep calls Steve King a 'white supremacist' after Katrina comment MORE (D-La.) has suggested Goodell appear before the House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee to field questions about the missed call. 

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) joined a host of Saints fans earlier this week when he said he planned to boycott the Super Bowl out of lingering resentment over the call.

A second, class-action lawsuit over the result of the Jan. 20 game is still pending in Louisiana court.