On third-and-7 from the Jets' 26-yard line, Barnes came on a cornerback blitz on quarterback Mark Sanchez and dropped him for a loss. But referees immediately threw their flags right after Barnes sacked Sanchez. The official said that tight end Dustin Keller had committed a false start penalty and that the whistle had already been blown.
It appeared that none of the players had heard the whistle because both Barnes and safety Reed Doughty blitzed, the running back picked up Doughty’s blitz, and Sanchez was trying to get off the pass when Barnes sacked him.
“I didn’t hit him in his head, it was just the fact that it was a late whistle,” Barnes said. “It was because it was a false start somehow, some way. I didn’t see it, nobody else saw it. He happened to blow the whistle two seconds after. Defensive and offensive plays aren’t that long, so everybody was still playing, nobody heard the whistle. I was just executing.”
Immediately after the call was made, Barnes argued vehemently. His penalty outweighed the false start penalty and gave New York a first down. Once on the sideline, Barnes tossed his helmet in frustration.
“I was pissed,” Barnes said. “I guess it was a tough situation for the ref … but when stuff like this happens, it makes you not want to play. Makes you want to play seven-on-seven. Made me take a step back as far as physicality, but really it made me want to go out and hit him even more.”