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NFL Zebra Problem

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; The last time the NFL’s contract with officials was up for negotiation, in 2012, you might remember some of the debacle calls for the first three weeks of the NFL season, when replacement officials were often derided for some lousy ...

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Old 04-08-2019, 04:30 AM   #1
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The last time the NFL’s contract with officials was up for negotiation, in 2012, you might remember some of the debacle calls for the first three weeks of the NFL season, when replacement officials were often derided for some lousy calls. The next contract couldn’t come at a worse time for the league. The league’s agreement with the officials union expires next March, so this is the last year—and a very big one—for this contract. But the expiration of the deal could force the NFL to do something it should have done before the current referee problems reared its head in the past 14 months: consider making all referees full-time officials, and compensating them with richer, multi-year deals to compete with the TV networks hiring them away from the league.



Last week, NFL referee John Parry retired to take a job at ESPN, which, by the way, is cycling through former NFL refs for studio and Monday night game work at an alarming pace. (2017: Gerry Austin; 2018: Jeff Triplette; 2019: Parry.)

There are 17 referees in the NFL, heading 17 officiating crews. And the turnover among the officials is alarming:

• In the last 13 months, seven of the league’s 17 refs have walked away. Last year, four refs (Ed Hochuli, Terry McAulay, Gene Steratore, Jeff Triplette) retired. This year, three more (Walt Coleman, Pete Morelli, Parry) have stepped down.

• The referees who get the annual Super Bowl assignment are deemed the best in the league over the course of that season. The refs in 10 of the last 16 Super Bowls have left the field. If they’d all aged out, that would be one thing. But the referees in six of those games (McAulay did three Super Bowls, Parry two and Steratore one) all left the game in their fifties, a decade considered to be prime time for refereeing. Traditionally, the retirement age for good officials is somewhere in their mid-sixties.

• Two more referees, Tony Corrente and Walt Anderson, are both over 66, and likely have one or two years remaining on the field.

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Old 04-08-2019, 08:28 AM   #2
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Re: NFL Zebra Problem

Part of what he talks about in this article is exactly the problem with what happened in the Rams game. You had a younger official overruled and contradicted by an older more senior official, and the two weren't familiar or used to working with each other. These kind of obvious mistakes will happen more and more frequently, given the current turmoil in the officiating ranks. It's a big problem and of course the league has no answers and is completely AWOL on correcting it.
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Old 04-08-2019, 08:37 AM   #3
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Re: NFL Zebra Problem

Originally Posted by SaintsBro View Post
Part of what he talks about in this article is exactly the problem with what happened in the Rams game. You had a younger official overruled and contradicted by an older more senior official, and the two weren't familiar or used to working with each other. These kind of obvious mistakes will happen more and more frequently, given the current turmoil in the officiating ranks. It's a big problem and of course the league has no answers and is completely AWOL on correcting it.
Stated this before in another thread that you don't need to be working out workplace personality politics out in the public on nearly the biggest stage of the game, the conference championships...
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Old 04-08-2019, 05:37 PM   #4
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Re: NFL Zebra Problem

Originally Posted by SaintsBro View Post
Part of what he talks about in this article is exactly the problem with what happened in the Rams game. You had a younger official overruled and contradicted by an older more senior official, and the two weren't familiar or used to working with each other. These kind of obvious mistakes will happen more and more frequently, given the current turmoil in the officiating ranks. It's a big problem and of course the league has no answers and is completely AWOL on correcting it.
Playoff games are also officiated differently.

The crews are entirely made up of different guys from various crews in the regular season.

The idea is really to "let them play" in the playoffs and stay off the tick-tacky calls. Over the years, there have been various non-calls and questionable stuff let go cause they don't take it as seriously as they do in the regular season.

Green Bay has gotten away with more holding than any other playoff team in the last decade. I would argue that no team has gotten more favorable calls go their way than the Packers and it's largely because golden boy is their QB. Go back to that 2016 playoff run they had and watch the games vs the Giants and Cowboys. Several non-calls went their way and there was even a weird WTF penalty called on Dallas; that had not been called since 1984 (Dallas also had an interception on Rodgers late in the game that was called back before a GB score). The refs couldn't bail them out in Atlanta cause they finally faced a decent team that stomped them into the ground.

Before last year, I recall several plays in the Eagles/Patriots Super Bowl, specifically the two point conversions where New England got away with blatant pass interference.

I can't lie; I am concerned that reviewing pass interference and non-calls of it is going to have grave consequences. It's almost ironic that this rule change was pushed by Payton, when we had the most defensive pass interference penalties of any team last year (20 total). One of my greatest fears going into the playoffs last year was Eli Apple drawing a blatant PI call.
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Old 04-09-2019, 12:02 PM   #5
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Re: NFL Zebra Problem

Here we go again....back to four hour games!

I predict that many plays will be brought back for some tacky holding call that was irrelevant to the play and we will see the dark side of some coaches personalities.
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