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Referee Pete Morelli laughs as he calls 5 penalties on one 49ers-Broncos punt

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It was as absurd as you’re gonna get in the preseason.

The preseason offers plenty of serious analysis, but it also provides plenty of absurdity. We saw that late in the third quarter of the 49ers-Broncos preseason game.

There are a ton of penalties in preseason play, and special teams in particular offers a ton of them. On one punt, we saw five penalties called. Bradley Pinion punted the ball, and penalties included the following (Broncos: receiving, 49ers: kicking):

Receiving team - holding #46 Dontrell Nelson
Receiving team - holding #81 Steven Scheu
Receiving team - Block in the back #80 Jake Butt
Receiving team - Personal foul #2 Dante Barnett
Kicking team - Holding #18 DeAndre Smelter

The referee, Pete Morelli, recognized the absurdity of the situation, breaking into laughter midway through. At the end, he said, “With all that, it’s an offset.”

I think the 49ers shrugging shoulders emoji summed this all up best. Oh preseason football, you’re so ridiculous.