Biggest Winners of the NFL Referees' New Deal

Josh ZerkleChief Writer IIISeptember 27, 2012

The NFL and its referees association have reached an agreement that will effectively end the reign of incompetence from the so-called "replacement referees."

The league and the NFLRA have agreed on an eight-year deal that will put the original referees back in action in time for the Week 4 slate of games, including Thursday night's game in Baltimore between the Ravens and the Cleveland Browns.

WATCH: The Worst Calls From The NFL's Replacement Officials 

Concern exists over how much better the original officials will be after having missed the entire preseason and their regular on-field practice. Despite having been briefed and tested extensively on the new rules in effect for 2012, it seems inevitable that these guys would be a little rusty. 

As far as the negotiations, the NFL's original pool of officials, the "real refs," did well for themselves. They saw movement from the league on the two biggest issues. Their original pension plan will now be gradually phased out instead of being completely abolished in lieu of a 401(k) plan.

Also, the number of new officials to be introduced into the league was negotiated down to seven. The NFL originally wanted 21.

There were other winners in the NFL's new deal with its officials. For my complete list of winners, check out my video above and leave your thoughts in the comments below. Hopefully this will be the last time that we're talking about the referees instead of the least for a while.

Again, thanks for watching.