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Goodell doesn’t seem concerned about replacement refs


With the NFL and its officials at a standstill in negotiations on a new contract, and with the league poised to begin the preseason using replacement officials, Commissioner Roger Goodell doesn’t seem particularly concerned about the matter.

“We had discussions recently,” Goodell said at a visit to Packers camp, via the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “Hopefully, we’ll have more in the near future. But as you can see we’re preparing for the season and we will [have] officials on the field. We hope our officials from last season will be on the field this season.”

At the moment, it doesn’t appear that they will be the same officials from last season. Instead, the NFL is training a couple hundred replacement officials, most of whom have no experience at the NFL level or even at the highest levels of college football. Goodell acknowledged the concerns about player safety if novice officials aren’t properly enforcing the rules designed to keep players safe, but he said that wasn’t a problem the last time the NFL used replacements.

“That’s why we’ve been training them for the last two months,” he said. “We had this experience in 2002 [editor’s note: It was actually 2001] and the big impact in 2002 was you didn’t get the holding calls and some of the other calls. Safety is such a focus for us. They’ve been training on that basis.”

Goodell said the proposal the NFL has made to the officials is fair. The officials don’t agree. Which means there’s a good chance those replacement officials will still be in place when the games start to count for real.

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29 Responses to “Goodell doesn’t seem concerned about replacement refs”
  1. nygmenruleny says: Aug 1, 2012 1:45 PM

    NFL, Please don’t make this a pissing match with the refs! get the deal done, there are still a couple of days left before the first preseason game!

  2. joetoronto says: Aug 1, 2012 1:46 PM

    I don’t blame him, bring on the replacements!

  3. pwndabeer says: Aug 1, 2012 1:47 PM

    if you really think about this issue, the idiots that enforce the rules are going against the guys you wanna kill when they make bad calls…

  4. Slim Charles says: Aug 1, 2012 1:48 PM

    What does he care? He knows people will go anyway no matter how crappy the officiating is. Fans will complain but still watch.

  5. sportmentary says: Aug 1, 2012 1:48 PM

    I don’t want to see replacements. They’re going to suck and it’s going to ruin the enjoyment of the game.

  6. redskinpotatoes says: Aug 1, 2012 1:52 PM

    “Doesn’t bother me. My word is law of the land anyways.”

  7. LoCoSu@%s says: Aug 1, 2012 1:54 PM

    Got to say – right or wrong – man’s got steel cojones, or just plain doesn’t care.

  8. skoobyfl says: Aug 1, 2012 1:58 PM

    The new Refs need to be educated in “Tuck rule” playbook, anything that helps the Pats succeed is considered legal.

  9. maddrespct says: Aug 1, 2012 1:59 PM

    i could care less. Does anyone actually watch the game for the officials,

    This is a JOKE

    Players take cut
    Owners meet players in the middle

    But Refs get What they want, LOL

    Take the Cut and Enjoy the sweetest job in the US

  10. steelerdynasty2010 says: Aug 1, 2012 2:02 PM

    was he around to completely muddle and make unclear the interpretations/understandings of the rules the last time replacement refs were used?

  11. jlb10 says: Aug 1, 2012 2:06 PM

    goodell is a joke. wished this guy would get dumped on his ass

  12. justwinbaby29 says: Aug 1, 2012 2:23 PM

    As a Raiders fan forgive if I don’t exactly have a lot of love for the current NFL officials.

    However – and I’m not a conspiracy theorist – but I hope the league properly vetted the replacement officials. You don’t want a Tim Donaghy to slip through and cause havoc. These officials are not well known like high D1 officials.

    My guess is the regular officials miss a portion of the preseason but be ready to go Sept. 5 at Metlife stadium.

  13. bigball1 says: Aug 1, 2012 2:25 PM

    Seems as Goodell does not like to be second guessed on any issue…..he said it is a fair offer, if he said it and he has decided then he must be right. Just like his dealings with the NFLPA. Between the two of them they cover all knowledge….Goodell knows EVERYTHING, and they know the rest!

  14. xxwhodatxx says: Aug 1, 2012 2:30 PM

    Bring on the replacements, they can’t be any worse than what they have. Last year some of the worse officiating I’ve ever seen was on display.

  15. cags777 says: Aug 1, 2012 2:31 PM

    This news concerns me. The last time the NFL brought in replacement officials, it was a disaster. Numerous missed calls and no organization in games. Heck, at one of the games they allowed the play clock to run past zero. This deal needs to get done. Otherwise the product suffers.

  16. h4wksf4n says: Aug 1, 2012 2:31 PM

    Replacement refs can’t be any worst then the ones they have now.

  17. scytherius says: Aug 1, 2012 2:33 PM

    Get ready for many of your favorite players to get badly hurt all so Jerry Jones can make a few more bucks.

    The “we care about player safety” is a joke. That was all about not getting sued.

    Come on Jerry & crew … just call it what it is and carve up the NFL and sell it for scrap. That’s less painful than watching you kill it just a little more each and every year.

  18. scytherius says: Aug 1, 2012 2:35 PM

    “i could care less. Does anyone actually watch the game for the officials,”


    It is my sincerest hope that people as stupid as you never, ever hold positions of authority.

    Of COURSE you don’t watch the game for the officials you idiot. The reason is because they do such a good job that you almost don’t know they are there. That takes skill to do that.

    Sadly, we may be watching games for the officials this year.

    There are a handful of you that post here that think everyone should work for free. You first.

  19. nebster21 says: Aug 1, 2012 2:53 PM

    of course he does not care about the referees. that might mean he cares about the NFL and not so much about himself and the money and the power he has. All he cares abouot is himself. Not this game we love.

  20. rexryanschoolofpodiatry says: Aug 1, 2012 2:55 PM

    Replacements will be better. The regular officials make the game way to technical and feel the need to put their stamp on each game. Replacements will just focus on the major stuff and let the boys play.

  21. jpb12 says: Aug 1, 2012 2:57 PM

    I can tell by his picture

  22. maddrespct says: Aug 1, 2012 3:13 PM

    There are a handful of you that post here that think everyone should work for free. You first.


    No you are CLEARLY an idiot if you think the NFL players and owners receive less profit and that’s not passed on to the refs.

    This is a BUSINESS, u fail to realize that, for some reason you tend to think the refs SKILL can’t be replaced. If the game suffers it will ve minor and it shouldn’t take more than a season to insure the replacements officials are properly trained.

    In BUSINESS when your contract expires you renegotiate. If that’s not an option you find replacements not agree to any ridiculous demands.

    I think it’s interesting HUNDREDS of officials are willing to accept the LOW offer that the officials aren’t willing to accept

  23. mvp43 says: Aug 1, 2012 3:40 PM

    Replacements will be better. The regular officials make the game way to technical and feel the need to put their stamp on each game. Replacements will just focus on the major stuff and let the boys play.

    That will be fine until the replacement misses the same call 3 times and your QB gets a torn up knee. I think the regular refs are asking too much as well but I don’t want my guys ending up in a stretcher because inexperienced refs.

  24. jm91rs says: Aug 1, 2012 3:50 PM

    I think it’s interesting HUNDREDS of officials are willing to accept the LOW offer that the officials aren’t willing to accept


    That is a very valid point. I’m sure some of these guys are plenty qualified and very excited about working weekends traveling from nfl stadium to nfl stadium.

    The nfl pie is growing and this is all about the referees wanting their share to grow as well. The problem is that while their job is difficult, their skill is not one that cannot be replaced. The nfl cannot go on without players, but refs are pretty easy to replace. They’ll realize that soon and either cave on demands or move over for the next group of anonymous part timers

  25. dawgpound3 says: Aug 1, 2012 3:51 PM

    If I was Roger Goodell, I would send a memo to all thirty two teams containing this:
    Dear NFL team and players,
    Recently I’ve have been negotiating with the NFLRA, and things are at a standstill right now. However, this does not mean a deal can’t get done as soon as possible. I will continue to negotiate with the NFLRA in good faith and continue to work out a new deal as soon as possible. If in the offchance that the deal isn’t reached by the season opener, I have been preparing replacement referees. I understand most players may be concerned, however, the replacement referees will coached to NFL quality and therefore will not affect the integrity and the game that we all love so much.

  26. fmwarner says: Aug 1, 2012 3:55 PM

    Of course Rog isn’t concerned. He thinks that his game is so bulletproof that the actual quality of the product is irrelevant.

    Hey, he might be right. The NBA is pretty popular these days.

  27. silentcount says: Aug 1, 2012 4:05 PM

    At this point, Goodell’s main concern is trying to stay out of a Louisiana court room. He knows he won’t be able to remain as commissioner when the full truth is made public. He knows he made a mistake when he continued with his accusations even after his main “witness” recanted his original claims. His only way out is to give a years suspension to every head coach of all 32 teams. In the last three seasons, they’ve all had players who joked about pay for hard hits.

  28. vikingamericann says: Aug 1, 2012 4:16 PM

    Too many paid NFL shills posting a pro NFL anti-union stance. it just shows how pathetic the NFL is to hire a PR firm to post their anti American message of exploitation to keep 16 mil more of the billions each team gets.

  29. brownsapologist says: Aug 1, 2012 11:40 PM

    This is not good. If he’s coming out and saying that they’re telling the officials to focus on player safety then we need to get ready for all of the missed holding calls and the increase in BS late hit and illegal quarterback touching penalties. There will be a flag on every play!

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