Saints fans throw trash on field as referees depart after wild-card loss

New Orleans Saints fans took out their fury on referees following the final game announcement that Kyle Rudolph's winning touchdown catch would stand in the Saints' 26-20 overtime playoff loss to the underdog Minnesota Vikings on Sunday. 

Trash was thrown in the direction of the officials as they departed the field following the NFC wild card heartbreak, and the public address announcer could be heard pleading to fans: "Ladies and gentlemen, please do not throw anything on the field." Trash was thrown from the upper deck. Postgame videos and photos show a drink was thrown from the front row — nearly making contact with a referee.  

Saints fans' boos could be heard echoing throughout the Superdome as the No.6-seeded Vikings celebrated their upset victory over a No. 3 seed, and it marked the second year in a row that New Orleans went home in January despair following last year's controversial NFC championship loss to the Los Angeles Rams that cost the Saints a trip to the Super Bowl. 

A drink is thrown at referees as they leave the field after the NFC Wild Card Playoff game between the Minnesota Vikings and the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes Benz Superdome on January 05, 2020 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo: Chris Graythen, Getty Images)

Sunday's gripe for Saints fans could come from an arguably uncalled offensive pass interference, yet it wasn't as egregious as last year's missed defensive pass interference vs. the Rams. 

After the Sunday's game, Saints safety Vonn Bell argued that Rudolph "pushed off" on cornerback P.J. Williams to secure the game-winning touchdown pass from Kirk Cousins, but added, "you can't do anything about it."

Former NFL official Terry McAuley even noted on Twitter that the play could have been flagged for offensive pass interference. However, NFL head of officiating Al Riveron told reporters after the game: "There is contact by both players, but none of that contact rises to the level of a foul."

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