Saints vs. Packers: Green Bay's Win Shows NFL Refs Not Far off from Replacements

Dan RudakoffContributor IIOctober 1, 2012

GREEN BAY, WI - SEPTEMBER 30: A penalty flag rests in the end zone during a game between the Green Bay Packers and the New Orleans Saints at Lambeau Field on September 30, 2012 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Packers defeated the Saints 28-27. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Call me crazy, but I actually found the weekend's NFL games boring without the replacement refs on the field.

After three weeks of completely oblivious officials, watching a game where the guys in the striped shirts actually had control over the players became boring and repetitive.

I missed seeing a receiver and safety jump for a deep pass and not knowing which one of them will be flagged for pass interference, or if maybe it would be ruled a simultaneous catch. The real refs seemed almost complacent, like they could do no wrong, and we would simply ignore any rust they might have from not working.

Even the smug, slightly overconfident "It's good to be back" during each coin-toss, something that was funny on Thursday, was just old by Sunday night.

Thankfully, the refs in the Green Bay-New Orleans game were kind enough to give us our weekly taste of "we have no idea what just happened, so we are just going to try to roll with it."

Luckily for them, the call—which caused a bit of a ruckus in the stadium and allowed Joe Buck to make a reference to a Kardashian sister's honeymoon—ended up being negated by a missed field goal.

I was really pulling for Saints kicker Garrett Hartley to make the field goal that would have given his team the lead with less than three minutes left.

Oh right, he did, but it was called back by a bit of a soft holding penalty. Then, before he could take kick No. 2, the refs called a penalty on Green Bay, negating half of the yards lost on the previous holding call.

Then Hartley missed to the left.

How great would it have been to have the Packers robbed by both the real and replacement refs in less than a week?

What would we all do? We spent all week—actually the last three weeks—vilifying the replacements and spouting off at how ludicrous it was that incompetent refs were on the field.

Since we got rid of the replacements for costing a team a game, would we do it again?

Bring on the replacement replacements.

I was thrilled that a set of errors and questionable calls, the kind everyone was complaining that the replacements made all too often, would be made by the professional, "they are the best" refs.

Part of me wonders if someone from the NFL somehow managed to sneak a weighted ball onto the field so that Hartley’s kick would pull to the left.

While having the proper refs on the field will not stop me from watching games, it will be done with a twinge of sadness. I will deeply miss seeing a flag thrown and never knowing if it was holding, encroachment, pass interference or high-sticking.

Now I can only hope that the "real" refs will make a few blunders, ones such as this, to make my Sundays a little more fun.