On Sunday night, the NFL’s replacement officials were criticized for pushing their flags deep in their pockets. On Thursday night, referee Donovan Briggans started things off in San Diego with an itchy trigger finger.
Briggans threw a 15-yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct on Packers linebacker Nick Perry, who simply flexed his muscles briefly after a sack. He didn’t do it in the face of a Chargers player or with, say, the middle fingers of his hands extended.
For those of you who will be quick to point out that the locked-out officials make plenty of mistakes, too, the point is that with the NFL using third-tier officials (at best) during the work stoppage, it’s important to be shining a light on mistakes that could alter the outcome of games once the regular season begins.