The NFL union and the Officials have yet to come to an agreement, so for the meantime the NFL went out and got replacement referees. Now that the regular season has begun having the replacement referees has caused an upset.
In the first week the replacement referees were inconsistent with calls and made a few miss calls, but nothing that changed the outcome of any games. Over the weeks I felt that everyone was just over reacting on this situation. The regular officials made mistakes and were not perfect either. They would miss calls and a few even fumbled their words when announcing a call. I believed that everyone was just being extra hard on the new referees because they were new and not what everyone was use too. Also they are getting their mistakes pointed out way more publicly than the regular officials did, because the new ones are being watched with a close eye from the whole world. I think everyone needs to relax and not be so hard on them. Instead we should all do what we can to be more helpful. This is the hand everyone is dealt right now in football and everyone needs to handle it in a more positive way.
Well last night I noticed something else.
Last night the Denver Broncos played the Atlanta Falcons in a 3 hour and 27 minute game that really got out of control. The officials of this game missed quite a few calls, and even made some mistakes with ball placements and yardage. But it was the first half that was the worst of the worst. In an unbelievable 1st half that lasted an hour and 28 minutes the replacement officials continued to make 1 mistake after another. At the end of the 1st quarter with only a few seconds left the Broncos fumbled the ball. The players leaped after it piling up on top of each other. As the officials called to stop the play the players were pulling others off the pile starting many fights. When the officials got to where they could announce the call they said the Falcons recovered the ball, but personally I would have thought the Broncos player (#87) had it. Also the officials made no ejections.
The best video of the fight: click here
If you watch the video you can see players not listening to the officials, yelling at them, and even pushing them out of the way. SAD! Even the Broncos coach, angry about the call, started yelling at the referees; not setting good examples for the players in this situation. It just got out of control and almost took everyone about 10 minutes to resolve the issue. With the referees being new I feel they should be strict and throw out ejections with ease, just for the first few weeks till they have some respect from other. The referees should have ejected any players that continued to fight or talk back during that time. They need to demand respect!
After seeing this I realized the coaches and players of the NFL do not have any respect for the replacement referees and they have no problem with showing it or voicing their opinions. Now it doesn’t matter how many good calls or mistakes these referees make, the respect is gone. I feel like we are going to have many more games like this and the lack of respect and disobeying will just grow. Throughout the weeks coaches and players have made comments about the referees and I believe it has led to this. With everyone stating their opinion on how much they don’t like the replacement referees it is rubbing off on others and motivating the rebellion. With no respect players will feel they do not have to listen to these officials, which will result in fights or outbursts or who knows what else. This is not going to be good, unless these replacement referees learn to demand respect. I hope they learn from this situation as well as coaches.
Baltimore quarterback Joe Flacco said, “I might sound like a little bit of a baby here, but for them to make that call, I think, was a little crazy.”
Philadelphia linebacker Ray Lewis said, “The time is now. How much longer are we going to keep going through this whole process? I don’t have the answer. I just know across the league teams and the league are being affected by it. It’s not just this game, it’s all across the league. And so if they want the league to have the same reputation it’s always had, they’ll address the problem. Get the regular referees in here and let the games play themselves out. We already have controversy enough with the regular refs calling the plays.”
Now don’t get me wrong. I can’t imagine how frustrating it is to be playing in a game and the officials making inconsistent calls, or not even being aware of all the rules. I just feel that there is a better way of handling this situation. I believe it would be more effective if coaches and players present themselves as more understanding for the time being. If there is a problem they should just explain it to the NFL or calmly to the official during the game, but not to the media. Also coaches right now need to be more worried about setting a good example for their players and if there is a problem or bad call the coach should talk it out with the referee instead of screaming or yelling. Yes this would be fine if the regular referees were here because they already have the respect from players and coaches. So the yelling and standing up for their players is not a problem and the regular officials can handle it. At this moment the new officials can’t and the players are seeing it and so they are acting out more. The NFL needs to get all this under control fast or quickly comes to an agreement with the regular officials before this gets too far out of hand.
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