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NFLPA welcomes back the regular officials

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While players often sent inconsistent messages regarding their views on replacement officials, the NFL Players Association was clear and unambiguous.  The union didn’t want replacements, and the union wanted the regular officials to be returned to duty.

Now that the lockout is over, the NFLPA has rolled out the green carpet for the men in black and white.  “Our workplace is safer with the return of our professional referees,” the NFLPA said in a statement.  “We welcome our fellow Union members back on our field.”

And here’s the part where we tell it like it is, as we sometimes do.  The NFLPA did little to bring about the end of this lockout.  Yes, letters were sent and statements were issued, but it was all talk.  And it gained no traction.

At a time when the NFLPA has become as litigious as an union in America, why didn’t the NFLPA file a grievance under the CBA or a federal lawsuit or a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board?

While a strike never would have happened, the union could have organized a more sustained outcry from high-profile players.  Instead, men like Tom Brady — one of the plaintiff’s in last year’s collusion lawsuit — consistently has shrugged at the presence of less-than-stellar officials.

We agree with many of the things the NFLPA is doing, and we believe that, as the NFL grows richer and more powerful, it’s important for the union and others to provide real checks and balances.  In this case, however, the NFLPA could have done more and should have done it sooner.

Who knows?  With the right amount of pressure being applied to the situation, the lockout could have been ended before Monday night, when long-term damage was inflicted on the shield.

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47 Responses to “NFLPA welcomes back the regular officials”
  1. truthfactory says: Sep 27, 2012 11:30 AM

    Ed Hocholi doesnt do push-ups… He pushes the world down.

  2. deadeye says: Sep 27, 2012 11:32 AM

    Finally the real officials are back!

    Now we can get our crappy officiating done at a much faster and commercial-friendly pace.

  3. PowerMad says: Sep 27, 2012 11:33 AM

    Best news in months! The officiating gets better, and maybe, hopefully, mercifully, Packers fans will quit whining.

  4. mrnick66 says: Sep 27, 2012 11:38 AM

    a great article,because it is fact and not opinion .the nflpa welcomes back their union brothers now,where were they in june,july august and september ? why did they not say during a pre season game that we will not play because we are in total support of our union brothers. perhaps the cancellation of a meaning less pre season game would have sped up the process.

  5. panthrobro says: Sep 27, 2012 11:39 AM

    Awesome but lets not act like Packer fans and players won’t whine and complain when the calls don’t go their way.

  6. genaro1331 says: Sep 27, 2012 11:41 AM

    Welcome back new refs…. we now look forward to pushing around more experienced/feeble senior citizens rather than the inexperienced/feeble senior citizens…. Ed Hochuli aside, of course.

  7. rpiotr01 says: Sep 27, 2012 11:41 AM

    Bad calls will continue to be made for every team, but the process will not break down and everyone – players and fans – will have confidence that the integrity of the game is intact. That’s a huge difference.

  8. knackstermyea says: Sep 27, 2012 11:42 AM

    Cool now if we could only get Goodell replaced.

  9. eagleswin says: Sep 27, 2012 11:44 AM

    At the end of the letter was a reminder from Jared Allen that he’s not to be called for encroachment because he’s Jared Allen.

    I’m sure there a few other players with some post scripts as well.

  10. dvdman123 says: Sep 27, 2012 11:44 AM

    Monday night was NOT the first time in NFL history that an OFFICIAL’S incorrect call has cost a team a game. It has happened on many occasions before under the REGULAR OFFICIALS watch so don’t expect miracles.

  11. phrancheyez says: Sep 27, 2012 11:47 AM

    Everyone says the locked out officials make ‘just as many mistakes’…that’s simply not true…maybe I’m the only one who has watched any games in the past 10 years, but it’s never been even 1/8th as bad as it has been the first 3 weeks.

  12. sportsmeccabi says: Sep 27, 2012 11:48 AM

    The only difference will probably be that the blown calls will start going in favor of the patriots, packers, steelers, and the saints.

  13. dougydougdoug says: Sep 27, 2012 11:50 AM

    False sense of security. These guys will make just as many mistakes, as they have proven to do for every single season which has come before. Screw them.

  14. bigdawg24 says: Sep 27, 2012 11:51 AM

    Hopefully NFL referee Mike Carey will cut his theatrics when making calls and quit drawing attention to himself over the game.

    Just call the game, don’t overdo your hand gestures and announcing calls.

  15. 7swag7 says: Sep 27, 2012 11:51 AM

    The slowness of the game is primarily b/c of TV timeouts, not b/c of the refs. Commercials before AND after kickoffs is ludicrous, especially when the kickoff is now a meaningless play where many times the clock doesn;t even tick. NFL, you have insulted my intelligence.

  16. kahnsbushymustache says: Sep 27, 2012 11:52 AM

    I never bought the whole, “the playing field is unsafe because of the replacement refs” BS that the players spewed. Regular or replacements, the refs aren’t the ones hitting each other.

    It’s like them saying, “if we didn’t have these babysitters, we’d be doing whatever we want.” You as a grown man can’t be trusted to not injure your fellow union brother? What’s next? If it wouldn’t draw a flag, they’d be dropping their pants and taking a dump at midfield?

  17. filthymcnasty1 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:00 PM

    Monday Night’s *debacle will be the lasting legacy of the replacement refs. And thank you to the Packers for putting and end to the suffering of an entire nation.

  18. kingmj4891 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:04 PM

    truthfactory says:
    Sep 27, 2012 11:30 AM
    Ed Hocholi doesnt do push-ups… He pushes the world down.

    You forgot to add that he also makes mistakes just as bad as the replacement officals if not worse.

  19. marktroy says: Sep 27, 2012 12:05 PM

    Thumbs up if you think the Packers will get some favorable calls from the “real” officials for some payback for Monday’s baloney.

  20. karlton3 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:09 PM

    “Our workplace is safer with the return of our professional referees”

    Because the replacement referees were the ones taking cheap shots at the players, hitting them in the head, ripping off parts of ears, and putting hot sauce on players to get them out of the game.

    I can’t take comments like this from the NFLPA seriously when the members of the NFLPA are the ones who are responsible for a lot of the unsafe activity that happens on the field.

  21. phrancheyez says: Sep 27, 2012 12:12 PM

    @kingmj4891

    Ed Hochuli does not make worse mistakes than the replacements. He doesn’t even make AS BAD mistakes as the replacements. I’d love to see a shred of proof of this. Ed Hochuli has probably made as many bad calls in his career as the one official from the Green Bay/Seahawks game has in 3 games.

  22. wte1 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:16 PM

    When is the NFL going to make an official statement thanking the replacement refs for stepping in allowing the season to start on time?

    The NFL placed these guys in a no-win situation. They positioned them for failure and ridicule and that’s exactly what happened.

    They should at least receive some gratitude from the league office.

    I for one appreciate their efforts!

  23. wrm1230 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:19 PM

    Yes, Packers fans have whined the past few days and without question they have earned the right to whine over the asinine result in the Monday night game. But let’s not pretend that any of the fans of any other team would take the high road and refuse the easy opportunity to voice their own displeasure and….whine if you will….if what happened Monday night would have happened to their team.

    Quite frankly, the NFL and the police forces in some places can be quite thankful that the Packers were the team, city and State that got screwed in the first place. There are quite a few locales that open gunfire might have been the result rather than the complaining and whining done by Packer Nation.

  24. bobnelsonjr says: Sep 27, 2012 12:19 PM

    It would never have happened without the immoral attempted cover up by the league office of the Scandal in Seattle.

  25. westclaims says: Sep 27, 2012 12:23 PM

    Translation – why didn’t the players union create more legal chaos so this site could exploit that?

  26. bolts0621 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:26 PM

    Ed Hochuli is terrible – what has been lost here is that it was not a replacement official who did the booth review Monday

    Fact is – refs have been screwing up calls and costing teams games since the beginning of the NFL – the idea that its just the replacement officials is absurd.

    Aaron Rodgers needs to stop running his mouth, he conveniently doesn’t blame himself or his offense for completely being shut down on Monday

  27. stealersfannot says: Sep 27, 2012 12:28 PM

    For all of those fans who keep making the “real refs make mistakes and bad calls too,” or “great, now they can start complaining against the real refs” argument. NO ONE has ever said real refs don’t make mistakes.

    You’re argument is akin to saying a DIV III QB makes mistakes just like Tom Brady sometimes does, therefore it makes no difference if the DIV III QB is the QB of the Patriots.

    Yes, the real refs make mistakes. But they’ve honed their skills and perception over years and years of officiating the game at its highest levels.

    Real refs screw up questionable and vaguely defined verbiage in the rule book.

    Replacement refs couldn’t spot the friggin’ ball correctly, or spot blatant PI. or spot basic false starts, or get in the middle of a scrum and pull guys off of each other, or, or, or ad nauseum…

    Let’s start using our brains a little bit here!

  28. jmoonraker says: Sep 27, 2012 12:30 PM

    That’s true for the last ten years. In the mid to late 80′s it was pretty much like it was with the replacement refs. Society has become soft and the players are sissy’s compared to then. Too much complaining. I admit there was a lot of inexperience and bad calls but at least they let the boys play football.. Yes I said it. This is FOOTBALL

  29. tater2 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:31 PM

    The Regular Officials should sent a big old thank you gift to the guy that made that terrible call in Seattle……
    That was the final example of the replacements being in over their heads. Mr. Goodell does not like to be second guessed and it takes something like this to make him bend.

  30. kenstabler says: Sep 27, 2012 12:36 PM

    At least a Superbowl was not on the line. I will never forget the over officiating on the Tuck rule by these so called professional idiots. God I get sick when I watch that. So many bad calls over the years by these so called pro’s. To be honest, I liked that the replacement ref’s let the game be played, and not over officiated. I feel bad for Charles Woodson having this happen again, but at least it did not cost a Superbowl. Why was Walt the idiot Colman never fired.

  31. jimbo75025 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:37 PM

    So what happens tonight if the ‘real” refs blow a call and cost the Browns/Ravens the game?

  32. rugdog100 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:43 PM

    Now we can get back to ripping the regular refs for screwing up games.

  33. flaccotoboldin says: Sep 27, 2012 12:43 PM

    Ken Stabler – the tuck rule are applied correctly during the Patriots / Raiders game. It just turns out, its a stupid rule.

    As for this fluff piece, its so anti-union and transparently pro-NFL is gross.

    Another article says Goodell deserves a raise after this debacle, this article says the NFLPA didn’t do enough to stop the lockout? Hilarious.

  34. laeaglefan says: Sep 27, 2012 12:47 PM

    Like any of these labor disputes, you have to wonder why they couldn’t have had the same settlement talks weeks ago that they had now to come to an agreement. Its a shame that it cost the Packers a game to actually force the hand of the powers that be, to finally get serious about ending the lockout, but we, as fans have been subjected to those tactics before and no doubt will be again. As long as the fans keep shelling out the cash to bankroll the NFL, they’ll be treated with disrespect by the very people who profit from it.

  35. raidadon says: Sep 27, 2012 12:51 PM

    Great now start the all out bias toward the Raiders! Pack whinin about a regular season game. Revisit the Tuck game cheeseheads! Ya lucky the game went down that way otherwise everyone be talkin about ya Swiss cheese offensive line! 8 Sacks! Somewhere Favre was smilin!

  36. ham1 says: Sep 27, 2012 12:52 PM

    Lost in all this is the fact that the NFL wants to make the refs “accountable” and now says it has a provision for that.

    After all the fining of players and coaches its nice to hear that refs, if they do a poor job, can be sent down to the “minors”. Its not a fine, but it will be intresting to see how they impose this.

  37. jmoonraker says: Sep 27, 2012 12:54 PM

    Now your singing my tune. Finally someone with some brains and gratitude . Right on.

  38. jmoonraker says: Sep 27, 2012 12:56 PM

    These refs will have a point to prove now. Let the yellow napkins fly. Pass interference on every call here we go

  39. jmoonraker says: Sep 27, 2012 12:59 PM

    Now at least the Saints will make the Super Bowl…. Just sayin

  40. dcsween says: Sep 27, 2012 1:03 PM

    The return of the real refs gives Cortland Finnegan a sad.

  41. wte1 says: Sep 27, 2012 1:10 PM

    kenstabler says:

    I will never forget the over officiating on the Tuck rule by these so called professional idiots. I feel bad for Charles Woodson having this happen again…

    You mean the same Charles Woodson who illegally hit Brady to the head on that play although it was never called?

    The Patriots should have got another 15 yards on that play.

  42. laeaglefan says: Sep 27, 2012 1:47 PM

    “Pass interference on every call here we go”

    I’d love to see some statistical breakdown on number and total yardage of penalties, by type, broken down between 2011, in comparison to say, 2001 and 1991.

    It would give a true indication of how the dynamics of game officiating has changed over the years.

  43. cliverush says: Sep 27, 2012 2:46 PM

    They should have a flag fest on the Ravens as they have become used to getting away with cheap shots to the head, horse collar tackles, hitting late to injure and many other unsportsman like traits taught by harbaugh.

  44. irishnativeson says: Sep 27, 2012 3:16 PM

    Why hasn’t anyone mentioned that the coaching staffs and players had the largest measure of responsibility for the “integrity” of the game and came up short?

  45. jmoonraker says: Sep 27, 2012 4:31 PM

    Bingo my thoughts exactly.. Finally someone is using their head. These replacement refs were used by the players and coaches to avoid accountability for poor play. 8 sacks on Aaron Rogers are you kidding me….. It’s the substitute teacher syndrome. The kids act up because a new unaccustomed face is there and the blame is put on the substitute for not controlling the students but its the students fault in the first place for misbehaving… I keep saying this but this is a product of our soft underbelly in society. No one wants to take accountability so they throw the blame on someone else.. The old refs are gonna be out to prove a point now. Watch the yellow napkins fly. Enjoy everyone!!!!

  46. laserw says: Sep 27, 2012 6:28 PM

    Welcome back, Ed Hoculi – you rat bastard – fabricating calls that can’t be found on replay. You will now get my full attention – and the NFL will resume getting my emails notifying when your unethical self makes up a call out of thin air. You are not a professional – you are one of the referees who needs a replacement.

    Now the NFL season feels like it has begun…..

  47. deiong says: Sep 27, 2012 8:00 PM

    and pretty soon the replacement refs will be a distant memory, and well all wonder why the real refs aren’t any better. interesting how it seemed everyone forgot that the real refs make just as may bad calls.

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