NFL Referees Aren't Just Blowing Their Whistles

Brittany BakerContributor INovember 11, 2008

When I watch a football game, I want to watch the players, teams, and coaches.  I want to get mad when the coach calls a stupid play or when a player drops an easy catch.  I want to see big plays and enjoy every facet of the game.

But, enjoying every facet of the game has become increasingly difficult and I know exactly where to place the blame. 

It’s not the players.  It’s not the coaches or even the owners.  It isn’t even the broadcasters who ruin my sacred Sundays: it is the referees.

Recently, if I want to enjoy a game, I have to find a way to overlook a few things.  Missed calls, wrong calls.  Blown calls.  NFL refs are ruining the integrity of football as we know it.

How many times have you seen pass interference when the whistle wasn't blown?  When was the last time you saw obvious holding when the call wasn't made?  Regardless of what game you were watching, I'll bet you it was this Sunday or even Monday.

What about when your team's running back tries to hit the hole and get up the field, but he gets his head cranked around because some lineman's got his fingers in the facemask?  Yea, it gets called sometimes.  But let's say a reffing crew misses one facemask per game... That's ONE BLOWN CALL TOO MANY.

I don't think it's too much to ask for these men to do their job. Make the calls when they're right in front of you.  If they aren't right in front of you, position yourself to where the call can be made. 

It is simply unacceptable for a referee to be a casual spectator of the game.

A referee has to be active in order to find a way to make the right call.  That requires movement.  I've noticed quite a few times, (most recently this Monday in the 49ers vs Cardinals!) referees actually being physically in the way of the ball carrier.

The bumbling old guys can't even move out of the way of a player who's trying to avoid hitting anyone in order to get up the field!  Can we realistically expect that referee to make the effort to position himself where he can get the best view of every play of the game?

No. Generally speaking, NFL referees have proven that they are too lazy to find a way to make the right call. 

But why should they make the call right the first time?  There’s always Instant Replay!

Ladies and Gentlemen, the worst has happened. NFL refs use Instant Replay as a catch-all, fail-safe way to cover their lazy butts.

“Did he catch it?  It was pretty low, I couldn’t tell cuz I was standing over here.  Did you see it?”

“No, I was on the other side of the field, it’s your call.  You should have moved or something.  We’ll just call it a catch for a first down, we’ll find out if hit the ground when they challenge it…”

Coaches only have two challenges per game, but I bet any coach in the league wishes he had about 20 more, considering the unfortunate fact that calls are blown on a regular basis!  Death, taxes, and blown calls. 

Using challenges wisely has become a commodity that defines a coach’s winning strategy.  If a coach uses a challenge in the first or even second quarter of the game, it’s a waste of a challenge—it’s crucial to have all the right calls made towards the end of the game, especially if it’s close. 

Coaches have to save their challenges for the forth quarter because it’s an absolute given that blown calls will be made.

Who is going to hold NFL referees responsible for all the blown calls?  Certainly not the association that employs them—they’re the ones who bought the new, comfortable, black pants the refs wear under their pot-bellies this season.

Am I the only one who noticed the stripes aren’t quite straight?  Call me a fashionista, but the tailored look they now sport gives away their intentions.  They’re flared, to give an effect that’s more slimming. 

Ref’s should be fit in order to do their job.  They should not need their uniforms to give the illusion that they’re somewhat in shape!

NFL referees have gotten a little too comfortable, whether it be in their snazzy new uniforms or whether they’re too comfortable in their job security.  A crew that does a mediocre job of officiating the game should NOT be tolerated in the National Football League.