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The Replacement Refs Need To Be Replaced

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The Replacement Refs Need To Be Replaced

Usually when you start a new job, they train you. Someone sits with you at your desk and watches you enter invoices or data in a spreadsheet. A week or so later, they leave you alone, but probably do a quick double check on the work after you leave. By the 8th week, you’re pretty much on your own. Why? Because in most professions, and with most individuals, you get better the more you work at a job.

The replacement refs are this, in reverse.

This weekend, even before last night’s highway robbery, was a disaster.

Take Darrius Heyward-Bey, who after spending 10 minutes motionless on the turf, spent a night in the hospital recovering from a concussion and a strained neck.  He was sandwiched on a vicious hit that was a textbook definition of a hitting a defenseless receiver. There was no flag on the play.

Take the end of the New England and Baltimore game.

Now, even with the regular officials, that field goal is still a judgment call. But considering in games earlier that day, the refs marked off penalties from the wrong spot and gave San Francisco extra time outs and challenges; the replacement refs don’t have a good track record when it comes to their judgment.

And then there’s the "Touception" heard ‘round the world.

It was an interception. Despite what the NFL may tell me, there is no question about it. Unless they re-wrote the rules on what constitutes a catch before the game started and didn’t tell anyone. It was an interception.

But there was so much more wrong than that. Have two members of an officiating crew ever called a different outcome of a play and not discussed who was right? Ever? Has a post-game television interview ever happen before the game was over? Have the refs ever forgotten to end a game and then have to scramble to figure out how?

The end of last night’s game was a disaster. The play was called incorrectly, the refs completely lost control of the game and the NFL has now released a statement stating that Golden Tate caught the ball.

Last night’s Fail Mary is a piece of the puzzle, a big piece, but just a piece. These officiating crews are getting worse and are directly affecting the safety of the players, like Heyward-Bey, and affecting the outcomes of games. It is time to bring the regular refs back. It. Is. Time.

Jayme Joers is a writer at CheeseheadTV’s Eat More Cheese and co-host of CheeseheadRadio. She also contributes to and You can contact her via twitter at @jaymelee1 or email at [email protected].

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (21) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

mark's picture

Packers fans UNITE!

Everybody going to the game next week--BE CREATIVE--the whole stadium should wear black, a funeral for the NFL's integrity. Stick an unwrapped brat in an envelope and mail it to the NFL offices. A million cheesehead march. A banana in Goodell's tailpipe. Something...

overkill's picture

More pissed off than I was last night.
NFL "Ya know, we all make mistakes".

calipackfan's picture

I hope we get a free win next week for what they did

Josh's picture

I stopped watching the NFL after Week 1's awful, too long to watch new game format. What else did I miss?

jack in jersey city's picture

i've heard a few people blame our O line for the loss. what bullshit! yes, they sucked in the first half. yes, bulaga looked like a turnstile. yes, rodgers held onto the ball too long. but when all is said and done, they played good enough to win in the 2nd half and the ENTIRE game came down to a wrong call (and review) on the final play of the game. of course the NFL has come out and stood behind the call of the officials but this is flat out bullshit!

jack in jersey city's picture

p.s. the most infuriating thing is that the replay officials are NOT scabs. they are NFL employees and they STILL got the call wrong. call me crazy, but i think they upheld the play to prevent an all-out riot. just look at the chaos on the field during the review and the lining up for the extra point. there would've been a brawl and possible riot if they would've overturned the call. these replacement refs have completely lost all control in these games

D B H's picture

"call me crazy, but i think they upheld the play to prevent an all-out riot"

I thought the same thing even before they "confirmed" the ruling on the field. That stadium was going nuts, and those refs wanted to walk out alive.

CSS's picture

Ironically, I just listened to John Sullivan, Vikings starting Center, give an impassioned rebuttal to one of the homer hosts on KFAN. The host started to trot out the, 'you should have played better in the first half and this wouldn't have happened,' argument and Sullivan cut him off. He said he hates that argument with a passion. He went on to say it's a game played series to series, everybody is a professional and good teams/players show resolve and adjust. He went on a very articulate and impassioned rebuttal on the Packers behalf. Said they were robbed.

eqfan592's picture

Between him and their punter, the Vikings players are getting into this annoying habit of making me like them!

mudduckcheesehead's picture

Too true. But hey, they're pros. No need to hate them just because they got drafted by the Vikes. There's plenty of good reasons to hate the Vikings franchise -- principally their fans. Trust me, I live there and listen to KFAN.

BrianD's picture

How do you feel about the incorrect PI call Finley drew that continued a drive in which the Packers gained the lead for the first time?

That penalty was just as disgusting as the hail mary/Shields/Walden roughing plays.

Bercovici's picture

The PI call on Finley was wrong but it wasn't egregious. It certainly wasn't like the call against Shields, which was not only imagined but the opposite of what actually happened. Penalizing a CB for getting yanked down by the inside of his helmet by a larger WR is absurd. Flagging a DB for arriving too early when he actually got there just as the ball did is just an ordinary blown call. What happened at the end of the game was an entire comedy of errors.

jack in jersey city's picture

i agree that there were bad calls on both sides but a wrong call on the final play of a game should not determine the outcome. it's flat out BS!

PackersRS's picture

Yes. But we're talking about 1 penalty in Finley's case. And there was a lot of football left.

We're talking about 3 critical calls that kept a drive going that ultimately changed the game.

They got it wrong 3 (actually 4, 2 in a same play) times, if they get at least 1 of those right it's game over.

If they get the Finley call right it's not game over. The Packers would probably either make a field goal to get the lead anyway or pin the Seahawks deep and most likely get the ball back with good field position.

PackersRS's picture

The OL absolutely had a hand in this loss. You don't give up 8 sacks and expect a win. They were historically bad.

If their play was only bad, we win this game even with the refs. If they play average, it's a landslide.

But their play was so terrible that it made it impossible to move the ball in the first half, so essencially the Packers offense had only 2 quarters to work with.

CSS's picture

Rodgers and McCarthy have just as much ownership as the OL in that first half. How many times do you try to stretch the field when the administration of the game rules(accross the league) doesn't allow for it? How often can you audible out of run?

Rodgers owns at least 3 of those sacks. You can't allow for that ridiculous down-and-distance by hoping a receiver comes open when the current administration of the rules clearly favors the defense. Throw it away.

jack in jersey city's picture

yes, the game plan in the first half was absolute garbage and MM did nothing to change it. thankfully, he woke up during halftime and made adjustments.

i'm having a hard time figuring out why our offense is so bad this year. the only difference from last year is our running back (who is definitely an upgrade over grant), our center (who doesn't appear to be a significant dropoff from wells), and our offensive coordinator. anybody have any ideas?

PackersRS's picture

I disagree, I think Rodgers and MM are to blame for sure, and the run/pass ratio is their main fault, but the clear culprits were the OL. There were plenty of calls with checkdowns, and Rodgers went to the checkdown almost every play.

But it's extremely hard to move the ball when your only options are 3 step drops and run plays, specially when your offense is built around the receivers' ability to stretch the field and your QB's best throw is the seam.

CSS's picture

You can't stretch a field when the culture around the replacement referees through 3 weeks favors the defenders because they don't know how to administer the rules. There are no vertical routes against physical teams like San Francisco, Seattle and Arizona. Teams that can play a 2-deep shell with good safeties, get physical well down the field with nickle and dime corners (which they couldn't under the regular officials) and your team can generate pressure with four legitimate rushers there is no vertical game. Doesn't exist.

That favors the Packers defense too, of course, but you can't play last years offense against 4 of the first 5 opponents on this schedule.

Rodgers needs to own at least 3 of those sacks. Let me be clear, I'm NOT sticking up for the offensive line. They've been mediocre. But you can't put this offense in 2nd or 3rd and 20 against defenses that get up-field against you. Throw the god damn ball away. Who cares if you only complete 65% of your passes compared to last years Madden like numbers.

It's obvious he doesn't trust his line because he's getting happy feet even when he's had at least 4 seconds.

James's picture

We need to shut the NFL down now. Today. As with all contracted NFL workers, we are contracted to have refs. Unfortunately in the games now, the winners are going home losers, and the losers are being praised as winners. Therefore, there is no reason to continue playing this year. Let's make a move now, before we have any more injuries in a waste of a game.

dawg's picture

Roger Goodell, just a sucker in a three piece!
His best interests are for owners only!
If he doesn't fix this, this week, he should be gone!

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