NFL Takes Aim at Coaches When They Need to Look in the Replacement Ref Mirror
The NFL needs to focus on getting the real referees back, not on its teams for expressing their frustration.
The NFL reached out to the owners, general managers and coaches of all 32 teams this week to advise them that the type of on-field behavior it witnessed last weekend will not be acceptable this weekend.
"We contacted them to remind them that everyone has a responsibility to respect the game," NFL executive vice president Ray Anderson said Thursday night. "We expect it to be adhered to this weekend and forevermore."
Now yes, some coach's certainly could be more civil on the sideline and not so overzealous.
That said, perhaps the NFL hasn't noticed any of the horrendously blatant calls either. Week 2 gave us easily the worst pass interference call ever in the New York Jets-Pittsburgh Steelers game.
As you can see from the photo, Jets' receiver Santonio Holmes was cleanly covered and legally hit before dropping the pass. Obviously the play moved too fast for the refs, though, and they assumed a big hit that forces a receiver to lose the ball can only be done by pass interference.
Needless to say the call wasn't even on the player who made the hit.
This was just one of many calls frustrating fans, coaches and players alike. When the NFL started cracking down on bigger hits and making the game safer, it was tough at first, but in the end everyone involved benefited.
Now, the players aren't even getting the opportunity to actually play. Meaning: getting into position to break on the ball or catch it requires some contact. Unfortunately, the refereeing has not been consistent enough for the players to adjust accordingly game-to-game, as some easy calls have gone unnoticed.
Thus far in 2012, however, we have either gotten one extreme or another.
And as reported by Judy Battista of the New York Times:
The N.F.L. and the union that represents its locked-out officials talked this week in an effort to reach an collective bargaining agreement that would end the use of the widely criticized replacement officials, according to a person briefed on the negotiations.
Are you confident we'll see the real refs back in 2012? (1=Least, 5=Most
No further talks are scheduled, though, the person said, and there is no end in sight to the standoff.
So, the league continues this cyclical montage that has yet to change regarding the referee situation.
As the season progresses, and if the replacements don't become more consistently reliable, it will only help the regular officials' case. We'll then get to see truly how much the NFL appreciates having the best of the best making calls and providing the utmost objectivity.
Otherwise, we're going to see these replacement officials in January and in the Super Bowl.
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