When it comes to the breakdown interpretations, designed to speed up the ruck area, fans probably need to be patient. Wet weather often compromises the ruck speed anyway. Scrum-halves fumble a slippery ball. Passing is not as crisp. Defensive lines have more time to press up and suffocate back lines.
Sluggish support play, with Sale particularly guilty, was a significant source of penalties this weekend. This allowed jackallers to influence games, although some referees were certainly less stringent on technique than others.
As statistician Russ Petty has outlined on Twitter, the total of 138 penalties across six games is the second highest of the 2019-20 season to date. Then again, that tally is only seven more than that of round 13 back in March.
At the start of Super Rugby Aotearoa, which also saw a spike in the number of penalties, sides adopted a constructive attitude and pledged to improve their discipline, rather than moan about officiating.
Sometimes it can be tough to take such an approach. When Sale centre Sam Hill tackled Alex Dombrandt, the carrier pulled the tackler back towards the ball. Hill was penalised by referee Luke Pearce for failing to roll away.
According to Opta, 34 jackal turnovers were won by 30 different players. Jack Willis, Tom Curry, Sam Lewis and Rotimi Segun – three back-rowers and a wing – all forced two each. Exeter Chiefs were the only team not to register a successful jackal.