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Pereira says NFL is embellishing the credentials of replacement officials


It’s safe to say that FOX’s Mike Pereira won’t be going back to work for the NFL any time soon.

Appearing Tuesday on WSCR’s McNeil & Speigel Show, Pereira said that the NFL is embellishing the credentials of the replacement officials.

Regarding Craig Ochoa, for example, who served as the referee during the Hall of Fame game, Pereira says that the league has trumped up Ochoa’s experience level.

“They’ve tried to say that Craig Ochoa . . . was a BCS official, that he worked in the Big Ten.  He didn’t work in the Big Ten.  He’s not been a major college official.  I don’t think the NFL is going to say that he actually got released midway through the last Lingerie Football League season as a referee.  I don’t think the league is going to put that out.  The league wants as little out as possible.  They don’t want people talking about it.  They don’t want me talking about it.”

Pereira also suggested that, when NFL coaches are talking about it, they’re saying good things about the replacement officials because the league has told them to say good things about the officials.  And that claim carries extra weight because Pereira was the V.P. of officiating the last time the league locked out the regular officials — and when the league presumably sent out an edict to the teams to say good things about the replacements.

Or, at a minimum, to not say bad things about them.

Pereira has said he has no horse in this fight.  If anything, he risks getting some blowback from FOX for being too candid about the situation, especially if the NFL decides to apply a little Playmakers-style muscle to one of its “broadcast partners.”  And so when the guy who ran the officiating department says that replacement officials, none of whom this time around will come from the NCAA Division I conferences, compromise the integrity of the game, we’ll defer to the expertise, knowledge, and experience that allows Pereira to reach that conclusion.

“The risk is too great for the amount of money that’s being talked about,” Pereira says.

Amen, we say.  And the more that people in the media pay attention to what Pereira is saying, the more equipped the fans will be to believe something other than, “The regular officials stink anyway, so who cares?”

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32 Responses to “Pereira says NFL is embellishing the credentials of replacement officials”
  1. dealer009 says: Aug 7, 2012 3:54 PM

    Does using replacement officials increase the risk of organized crime compromising someone for betting purposes?

  2. reedrobertson says: Aug 7, 2012 3:56 PM

    C’mon people. Work out your differences. I think they will be back by he time of the regular season.

  3. mavajo says: Aug 7, 2012 3:57 PM

    ‘[…] the more equipped the fans will be to believe something other than, “The regular officials stink anyway, so who cares?”’


    But then how will I be able to immediately spot the ignorant hayseed fans that know next to nothing about football?

  4. bankai78 says: Aug 7, 2012 3:58 PM

    “He didn’t work in the Big Ten. He’s not been a major college official. I don’t think the NFL is going to say that he actually got released midway through the last Lingerie Football League season as a referee. ” Well technically, if there were 5 blessed women in the Lingerie Football League, maybe it was the Big Ten.

  5. der6495 says: Aug 7, 2012 3:58 PM

    The regular refs will be back. The referees that worked the Hall of Fame game looked lost out there. Penalty calls took forever and they aren’t 100% sure on the rules.

  6. sportfan23 says: Aug 7, 2012 3:59 PM

    Can’t believe the multi-billion dollar NFL ante up and pay to keep the best officials possible working their games. Just settle this so we can concentrate on the games and not who is officiating them.

  7. gumerk says: Aug 7, 2012 4:00 PM

    Way to be an advocate for player safety goodell. March on protecting your “integrity” of the game. Pfft commissioner please…

  8. upperdecker19 says: Aug 7, 2012 4:01 PM

    It may have been a good idea for Parcells to go with the untucked shirt look in that photo.

  9. watermelon1 says: Aug 7, 2012 4:02 PM

    If you actually believe anything this guy says, then your words hold no merit either. This is the same guy who tried to talk him
    And his fellow officials out of ridiculous calls each week on nfl networks “official review” segment.

    Sorry, but fans aren’t as dumb as preiera and the media would like us to be.

    An honestly, I don’t care if it’s the old officials following the script Vegas gives them… Or if it’s the new replacement officials making sure everything goes according to plan.

    Just give me my money. Straight cash, homey!

  10. sippindasyzurp says: Aug 7, 2012 4:04 PM

    I know people will say the regular NFL officials are bad and screw up all the time… For the most part though none of these refs have actually influenced the outcome of the game besides the most recent probably being that Hochuli call in Denver a few years ago…

    I think you will see that once there is a massive screw up in the first two weeks (cause there will be one) you will see the NFL come to there senses…

    And for all the people talking trash, has anyone volunteered there services?? Most of you probably have no clue about the half the rules in football…

    If anything the replacement officials are going to call less penalties and you will probably see a lot of “holding” and “illegal contact on a receiver” go uncalled.

  11. riggz91 says: Aug 7, 2012 4:09 PM

    Side note that is a great picture of the Tuna going hard at a ref. Almost as good as the time the steelers got called for 12 men on the field when they only had 11 and he freaked out and shoved a picture of the play in the refs pocket.

  12. pftree says: Aug 7, 2012 4:10 PM

    If I was a temporary replacement official, I’d be asking some friends to place some bets for me this season. You never know how long it will last, and might as well try for some big bucks if you’re going to get fired eventually. Just sayin’

    ‘missing’ a call here and there can really determine the outcome of the game, right Seahawks fans?

  13. truthfactory says: Aug 7, 2012 4:10 PM

    The refs were making a minimum of $75,000 per year to work a maximun of 30 days out of the year. Quit your bit****g!

    I actually enjoyed watching when they werent calling all the ticky tack penalties and its not like the old refs were great either. There was a laundry list of missed calls when they were reffing games too…

  14. giantsmetsfan says: Aug 7, 2012 4:25 PM

    Until referees like Bill Leavy are fired…I have no respect for the NFLRA. A blind duck could do better than some of the locked out refs so I think that these replacement ones can end up doing a good job. I mean, come on…these guys are getting six figures for a part time job and they want full pensions? Last time I checked…the new thing out there is 401k.

    As Goodell said…they are going through extensive training and I feel like anyone can learn to do anything.

  15. patpatriotagain says: Aug 7, 2012 4:30 PM

    i think this backfires on the nflra. less calls means more old – time football. fans may like it.

  16. maximusprime107 says: Aug 7, 2012 4:41 PM

    The regular officials stink anyways, so who cares?

  17. bayoubauer says: Aug 7, 2012 4:44 PM

    Oh Bill……everybody knows you don’t do the 5 point exploding heart technique with the BACK of your hand!

  18. kattykathy says: Aug 7, 2012 4:50 PM

    The NFL also embellished the whole “bountygate” sham.

    No, actually they lied, misled, and fabricated “evidence”

  19. tmar1961 says: Aug 7, 2012 4:50 PM

    The league plans to freeze and later terminate their pension plan; if your boss did that do you think you would like it and not want it resolved?
    Peoples perception that its a “part time job” should actually see the amount of work and travel involved for a NFL ref. They typically spend 25 to 35 hours a week officiating games or traveling and preparing to do so. Not to mention the hate mail, personal threats to themselves and their families.
    Now you want to bitch at the replacements because they mess up? The NFL Refs, the ones locked out by the NFL, make it look easy because they are good at what they do and earn every penny those BILLIONAIRE owners pay them.

  20. makimaguro says: Aug 7, 2012 5:14 PM

    The refs have made themselves bigger than they need to be.

    Perreira probably does have a horse in the fight – pension.

  21. brewdiggy says: Aug 7, 2012 5:35 PM

    Great pic of the The Tuna

  22. besdayz says: Aug 7, 2012 6:00 PM

    What a shocker. The NFL embellished evidence.
    That can’t possibly be true.
    (cue the syphocants, apologists, and anti-Saints hatred)

  23. eleventyeight says: Aug 7, 2012 6:06 PM

    makimaguro says: Aug 7, 2012 5:14 PM

    The refs have made themselves bigger than they need to be.

    Perreira probably does have a horse in the fight – pension.

    Good point. Perreira likely is still an NFLRA member.

    But…uh….I think the saying is “He doesn’t have a *dog* in the fight”.

    But horse fighting sounds interesting…I know a guy who might set it up- he works in Philly…

  24. FinFan68 says: Aug 7, 2012 6:07 PM

    Personally, I don’t care if they grabbed these guys off the unemployment line as long as they learn how to do the job well and minimize mistakes. It will never be a perfect science and the regular refs are prone to some inexplicable mistakes as well. Yes, they have a hard job…and yes, they are already fairly compensated for it. They have a right to fight against injustices and for better terms but their PR campaign is over the top and they are very hypocritical in their criticism of the league and the replacement refs.

  25. stanklepoot says: Aug 7, 2012 6:31 PM

    makimaguro says: Aug 7, 2012 5:14 PM

    The refs have made themselves bigger than they need to be.

    Perreira probably does have a horse in the fight – pension.
    Well, seeing as how he left as the V.P. of officiating, he almost certainly falls under management. As such, any pension he had would be different than the officials who worked for him. Oh, and the officials haven’t made themselves bigger than they needed to be. They did what they were told to do, and enforced the rules meant to protect QBs and WRs that the competition committee enacted. If you want to talk about officials overstepping their bounds and making the game about them, you might want to pay attention to what’s going on in MLB.

  26. backindasaddle says: Aug 7, 2012 7:02 PM

    I have no doubt that the regular NFL officials are, at this point, better. Of course they are better…. they’re trained to be NFL officials and the NFL is where they ply their trade so it only makes sense. I also have no doubt that the replacement officials could be brought up to the same standards within a reasonable time period if it came to that. However, it is difficult to comment further on the situation because I have no idea exactly what the new terms are that the Officials union is looking for. Are the refs being reasonable in their compensation / terms demands…. or are they not???

  27. geefan1 says: Aug 7, 2012 7:35 PM

    When the NFL decides to highlight the mistakes made by the full time officials I hope they use Pereira’s tape as an example.

  28. bittersportspills says: Aug 7, 2012 7:37 PM

    Why doesn’t Goodell take $2M out of his $20M salary and make up the difference between what the refs want and what the league wants to pay them?
    The regular refs stink, true. But college level refs are Shyte. Don’t wish for something and then find out its even worse. Replacement refs have to be an interior lineman’s worst nightmare; there’s gonna be so much dirty play going on in the trenches, completely unseen by these rubes.
    And frankly, I don’t think Goodell is worth Tom Brady or Drew Brees’ pay. Anyone ever buy season tickets to see the Commish?

  29. nflfollower says: Aug 7, 2012 8:25 PM

    Replacement officials or original officials, I really don’t care that much. What I really, really want, is to not have to hear Mike Pereira anymore. Please FOX, do something about this.

  30. coachglove says: Aug 7, 2012 9:55 PM

    I think the league should focus on having the best possible overall product out there on the field at any given time. I also think the NFLRA is screwing itself by sending out memos critiquing the performance of the replacement officials. Maybe they would have a more sympathetic audience in the fans if they were that open about their own members.

    I think many of these replacement officials will be just fine. Many of them would get jobs at higher levels if those jobs ever came available. Its not like D-I and the NFL have a lot of job openings every year. I have zero sympathy for the NFLRA officials given what they make for a part-time job and that barring them being arrested for throwing games, the job is damn near for life.

    I think they should make any ref that isn’t graded in the top 10% of officials have to compete for their job at a Q-school type environment every year so we can get fresh, younger eyes and bodies officiating games.

    My $.02.

  31. llewisraney says: Aug 8, 2012 11:06 AM

    do you understand, People, The Officials get down graded if/when they don’t make Nit-Picky call???!!! Downgrades affect their pay scale. The NFL is insisting on Nit-Picky calls, not the Officials.
    dont you understand, they may ‘work’ 30 games/days a year but they have had to travel away from their Day Jobs, house, home and family for a minimum to two extra days EVERY WEEKEND during football season?
    can you imagine spending night after night, all spring and summer, after a full days work at the day job, studying new rules and refreshing old rules to pass the next big Test?
    have you ever had your job performance ‘reviewed’ by millions of people who don’t know as much about your job as you do, suffered abusive language and death threats and THEN have an panel of paid professionals scrutinize your work, instant by instant, the next week?
    I wouldn’t touch this so called part-time job for $200K a year

  32. sammydalie says: Aug 13, 2012 7:45 PM

    Craig Ochoa was a ref in the United Indoor Football League and the Continental indoor Football League. I played in both leagues and he has officiated me several times. TERRIBLE would be an understatement…….

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