ARLINGTON, Texas – In a pool report after the game, referee Tony Corrente explained two costly Cowboys penalties in Sunday's 34-31 divisional-round loss to the Green Bay Packers at AT&T Stadium.
First, Brice Butler's 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on second-and-5 from the Packers' 37-yard line, which ultimately led to a punt:
"They brought in a two-receiver set on a substitution, and number 19 (Butler) was one of those two players and came into the huddle, stayed in the huddle, then departed," Corrente said. "He was substituted for. He has to stay either in the game or they can call a timeout to get out of it. Of course, he went out. It's not an obscure rule, it's just part of the substitution mechanics and part of the substitution rule."
Second, the pass interference penalty on cornerback Anthony Brown that wiped out safety Jeff Heath's interception with the game tied 28-28 late in the fourth quarter:
"The ball was in the air," Corrente said. "Once the ball is in the air, and he grabbed him, which normally would be a defensive holding, now becomes a pass interference. It prevented him from continuing down to make a play on the ball."
The call originally was on safety Barry Church, who wasn't involved in the play downfield, and was corrected to Brown.
"They gave me the wrong number," Corrente said.