Female official scheduled to make regular-season debut in Detroit

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Though the gender barrier may never be broken for NFL players, a woman will be on the field for the first time in a regular-season game on September 9.

Shannon Eastin, who made history as the first woman to officiate an NFL preseason game when the Chargers hosted the Packers, will set a more significant precedent by becoming the first female to work an NFL game that counts.

Mike Jurecki of Xtra Sports 910 in Phoenix reports that Eastin has been assigned to work the Rams-Lions game in Detroit.

The importance of the occasion is undermined by the fact that Eastin has earned the distinction not by successfully navigating the lower levels of the sport and earning a spot in the NFL but by accepting an assignment to keep the seat of a locked-out official warm.

We think that the best persons for the officiating job should get the jobs.  But if Eastin were among the best of the best officials and if we assume the NFL hires the best of the best, she’d be locked out right now.

But there’s the catch:  The locked-out officials may not be locked out by Week One.  We’ll have more details in a separate post.

13 responses to “Female official scheduled to make regular-season debut in Detroit

  1. Rookie ref and overanxious 3rd stringers trying to make the team…
    Just hope she’s not in the wrong place at the wrong time.

  2. “not by successfully navigating the lower levels of the sport”

    She’s been a referee at lower level for 16 years. If it wasn’t for the lock-out she would’ve never had the chance to go to NFL, where the referee stay until they are 70 y.o.

    The best of the best (debatable) don’t allow their work to be reviewed and I seriously doubt they would allow a woman in their club

  3. While it’s probably true that the regular officials are better than the replacements in general, with some reasonable assumptions regarding distribution of quality and probability, it is likely that about 30% of the replacements are actually better than about 25%-40% of the regular officials, depending on how many layers deep you wanted to assume they had to go to get the replacements.

    So it’s really unfair to say or imply that she’s bad, especially since I don’t recall reading any sort of report criticizing her officiating since the pre-season began.

  4. I don’t doubt that she could do an adequate job, but football is sort of a dudes thing in general. Like female announcers… It’s just not the same. I’m glad she like football, and wouldn’t you like to marry a woman like that, but it’s one of those things where I’m perfectly fine with the most important role a woman playing in football is to stand on the sidelines in a mini-skirt -cheering. I doubt you would even have noticed had there not been a statement about it, and you know the announcers will be talking about it like it’s some sort of monolithic achievement, and the camera is going to be watching her run around. I could do without it.

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