Understandably, the NFL often looks to protect its image; however, hypocrisy is often the result.
The NFL has made strides to make the game safer and more enjoyable. In using replacement referees, though, commissioner Roger Goodell is taking away from both areas.
The highly trained regular officials are unbiased (we hope), relatively effective at protecting players and experienced (the NFL stage doesn't bother them).
The replacement officials come across as fans. They seems nervous and excited; when I see a Bill Belichick yelling at a ref, the ref seems intimidated.
With so much less experience not only at the fast-paced NFL level, but with football in general, how can we expect the replacement officials to call an accurate game?
The players need to be the biggest advocates for getting a deal done.
Chris Kluwe spoke up on the mistakes of the officials (via the Washington Post); however, a bigger-name player speaking up may generate more of a reaction.
Some may argue that blown calls should theoretically balance out for teams over an entire season, but the game should be officiated at the highest level possible or else the product will suffer.
It is only logical to have the best of the best calling the game. Hopefully a deal is reached before the start of the regular season.