There were several questionable penalty flags thrown against the 49ers in the first half against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday night. So it was extremely surprising when one wasn't thrown on a pivotal play in the fourth quarter.
After the 49ers scored to cut the deficit to 24-21, the Packers took a deep shot to star receiver Davante Adams on first down from their own 25-yard-line. The ball glanced off Adams' hands, and as he was being taken to the ground, 49ers safety Jimmie Ward flew in from the side and delivered a brutal hit.
Adams remained laying on the ground for a while before heading to the blue tent. Surprisingly, no flag was thrown on the play.
Ward's initial contact was made with his shoulder to Adams' midsection, so it wasn't a helmet-to-helmet hit. However, there's no question Adams was a defenseless receiver in that situation, and thus Ward had the duty to protect him, which he clearly failed to do. It's a bang-bang play, but it should have been a penalty.
Luckily, Adams was OK. He quickly emerged from the blue tent and participated in the rest of the game, which the Packers ultimately won on a last-second field goal.