• Disaster in Seattle


    For anyone that didn't see the ending of the Monday night game in Seattle, here's the 5-second recap.

    Golden Tate mugged Sam Shields in what should have been one of the most obvious offensive pass interference calls ever. M.D. Jennings intercepted the pass, but Tate put one arm on the ball. One ref signaled game over, another signaled touchdown. The call went to instant replay, but they have no power to turn a reception into an interception. There was nothing they could do, the terrible call stood. Game over, eventually (15 minutes later when the teams came back out of the field for the PAT).

    I don't really have anything interesting to add to this debacle. I just felt we should have an open thread where everyone could chime in. When the NFL first made the decision to go to replacement refs, it was said that the only thing that would really make the NFL negotiate was a terrible call that cost a popular team a game. Let the negotiations begin.

    Comments 75 Comments
    1. tubbs1518's Avatar
      Is it just me or does the NFL not seem to know the rules? They say it was a reviewable play but both Gerry Austin and Mike Pereira as well as Eric Mangini all said today that it was not a reviewable play and the refs couldn't overturn it if they had wanted to on the replay. I'm inclined to believe Austin and Pereira over the NFL.
    1. bluestree's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by tubbs1518 View Post
      Is it just me or does the NFL not seem to know the rules?
      Well, there's a non-replacement official in the booth acting as arbiter/rulekeeper who can call down to a non-replacement official on the sidelines to make sure rules are properly administered, so judging from what we've seen, no it isn't just you. The concept is sound, but the execution is flawwed because clearly, the NFL does not know it's own rules.
      The NFLRA guys know the rules, but hey, rules
      schmules, ratings are up!
    1. Swami's Avatar
      I guess I'm an outlier but I thought both Sunday night and Monday night's games ended on very, very difficult calls to get right and the refs were in a tough spot. I'm not that bothered by their calls. Both losing teams did not play well enough to not be at risk to a last-second play that went against them. The calls were iffy, the refs probably went one for two, but, hey, it's just a football game. No lives were lost here.
    1. darvon's Avatar
      1/ The amount of money the NFL is holding out for in the ref talks? Get this: $3.3 million per season. That's 0.1% of the NFL annual take from TV alone. A pittance. Chump change.
      I believe that to be wrong. I believe it is closer to $40M up front right now and $3M per season, sort of.

      I am goint to start another thread about the two Bargaining positions and do the math.
    1. Rich Gapinski's Avatar
      Yeah, I should have specified. I think it is around $3MM per year through 2018. Your analysis should be a good check for that.
    1. vancemeek's Avatar
      My favorite name for it so far: the "Fail Mary"
    1. cml's Avatar
      In regards to whether people will still watch: Steve Young put this really well either a week or two ago, when he described demand for the NFL as "inelastic."

      They're the only game in town, so people will keep watching unless this stretches for a really long time.
    1. Andy Freeland's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Trumpetbdw View Post
      With each passing week, it's gotten worse. Now, it's not just perception, and they're not just missing calls, they're blatantly missing calls.

      Players and coaches are trying to get away with more than ever before because there's no control.
      I agree that it's getting worse, not better. I think there are 2 reasons for that.

      1. The substitute teacher factor, as you alluded to. One of the coaches in the last couple of weeks gave us a detailed and comprehensive list of all the penalties that the replacement refs weren't calling (then went on to say that his players had too much respect for the game to take advantage of the situation).

      2. The calls seem to be fairly random, there's no consistency. I think that they were told early on that they weren't calling enough penalties and just started pulling their flags out at certain intervals. I haven't called penalty in a while, that looks like it might be holding = flag. I saw a holding call on the backside tackle during a running play last night that you never see called.
    1. tubbs1518's Avatar
      Here is my thoughts on what happened after watching some more clips of it and seeing some still shots of it. Before I give my analysis though, I think it was an INT. To me it was a clear INT and how he missed the offensive PI I'll never know, but I'm going to tell you what I think the refs were thinking. Here we go:

      Jennings jumps up in the air and gets possession of the ball first, no doubt about that. While his is still in the air, before his feet hit the ground, Tate gets his hands on the ball. As they fall Tate gets his left arm somewhat behind the ball. As they hit the ground now finally completing the catch for one of the 2 it jars Tates left arm behind the ball more while he has his right arm around Jennings shoulder and his right hand is probably on the ball. The refs come in, seeing what they believed that they both had the ball once Jennings 2 feet hit the ground completing the catch. Therefore they decided to call it a catch and a TD on simultaneous possession. Once it went to review I honestly think the refs was affected by the fans as much as anything. If that game was in GB I think they call that an INT.
    1. hobbes27's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by wxwax View Post
      1/ The amount of money the NFL is holding out for in the ref talks? Get this: $3.3 million per season. That's 0.1% of the NFL annual take from TV alone. A pittance. Chump change.

      2/ Roger's mission has been to "protect the shield." How's that going, Roger?

      3/ The owners may be behind this. But a real NFL Commissioner is expected to show leadership. He's supposed to work with owners to steer the ship. He's not there to simply be pushed around by them. Roger Goodell needs to show some leadership and end the labor action.
      I am pretty sure this isn't Roger's choosing. Many NFL owners see refs as an unnecessary expense.

      It doesn't hurt the product who you put out there and the refs should be happy they have their jobs. At least that is the owner's perception. Until they get hit in the pocketbook that ain't gonna change. We can whine and cry about the poor officiating, but it ain't changing the owners' stance.
    1. hobbes27's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Swami View Post
      I guess I'm an outlier but I thought both Sunday night and Monday night's games ended on very, very difficult calls to get right and the refs were in a tough spot. I'm not that bothered by their calls. Both losing teams did not play well enough to not be at risk to a last-second play that went against them. The calls were iffy, the refs probably went one for two, but, hey, it's just a football game. No lives were lost here.
      I have no problem with the field goal call on Sunday night. It was a tough call and I actually believe the ref on the field had the best view as to whether it was still a field goal. I think they got that call right as I think it was just inside. But even if they called it a missed field goal, it would not have upset me, because the real refs might have called that a missed field goal. I think things were handled appropriately on Sunday night.

      But the Monday night game was a debacle from start to finish. I've only heard a few people who thought that it should have been a TD. The problem wasn't just the call but how they handled the whole thing. I mean seriously, you don't have a conference when one ref says its a TD and one says its a touchback? I mean that is just utter incompetency by the head referee, regardless of whether or not you thought they got the right call or not.

      And the refs were in poor position to see the play. Its one thing to blow a call. The professional referees blow calls. That's being human and nobody is perfect. Its the poor game management by these refs that is just making a mockery of things. Its simply being out of your league. The NFL owners believe that anybody can referee a professional football game. That clearly isn't the case to most of us.
    1. vancemeek's Avatar
      The players are directing all of their ire at Goodell. They need to address ownership.
    1. Trumpetbdw's Avatar
      I agree that the players need to be directing their ire at the owners.

      However, Goodell is the face of the league, which is something he's asked for. He also very clearly made himself the face of the owners during the players' strike. He was hired by the owners to run their league.

      I don't necessarily think this is all his fault. That said, he very clearly wants to put his own stamp on the shield, and make everyone aware of whom exactly is in charge.

      In that regard, he's made his own bed in this one. You can't be the leader only when things are good, then deflect or ignore criticism when things go wrong.
    1. iwatt's Avatar
      You don't complain to shareholders, you complain to the CEO. Goodell is the man getting paid some nice loot. It comes with the business.
    1. msclemons's Avatar
      Crap. I brought a spammer back with me from France.