Russell Wilson's lateral Sunday night wasn't illegal. It was just a Galilean transformation, according to Neal deGrasse Tyson.
A day after Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said he had put in a call to famed astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson to prove that Russell Wilson’s fourth-quarter lateral was legit, Tyson responded via Twitter with happy news for Seattle.
Wrote Tyson: “FYI: The lateral that
@DangeRussWilson threw to @MikeDavisRB in Sunday’s @Seahawks @Eagles game was a legit “Galilean Transformation”. In their reference frame, the ball went backwards. It’s not their fault they ran forward faster than the ball.”
In other words, if the ball appeared to go forward — as the Eagles protested, and which would be illegal since Wilson was six yards beyond the line of scrimmage at the time — it was just science at work and not a punishable offense.
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The Encyclopedia Britannica defines a Galilean transformation as “a set of equations in classical physics that relate the space and time coordinates of two systems moving at a constant velocity relative to each other. Adequate to describe phenomena at speeds much smaller than the speed of light, Galilean transformations formally express the ideas that space and time are absolute; that length, time, and mass are independent of the relative motion of the observer; and that the speed of light depends upon the relative motion of the observer.”
We’ll take their word for it, as well as Tyson’s, and we’ll thank Wilson, Mike Davis and Carroll for putting in, well, motion, one of the more unique occurrences in Seahawks history.
Who knew you could go to a football game and a physics class would break out?
As Carroll explained on Monday, he got to know Tyson a little when he was in town in 2016 and visited the VMAC and spent some time with Seattle players and coaches.
But we trust that he was also just calling it like he saw it.
The Eagles didn’t challenge the play with coach Doug Pederson saying the team didn’t quickly see a replay that made the think it was worth it, plus they had lost a challenge — and a time out — earlier in the half.
The NFL each week weighs in on a few controversial plays with explanations. We’ll see if they try to tackle this one later in the week or if they’ll let Tyson have the final say.