A cottage industry emerged last week among a small handful of contrarians who pandered to Seahawks fans by suggesting that the events that concluded the Monday night game between Green Bay and Seattle were handled correctly.
That industry can now officially be disbanded.
Replacement referee Wayne Elliott, who initially defended the call of a touchdown by Seahawks receiver Golden Tate, reluctantly admitted during an interview with Cris Collinsworth and James Brown on this week’s Inside the NFL that the call “probably” should have been an interception.
The heart of the controversy continues to be the difference between control and possession. If one player controls the ball before the other player, there can be no simultaneous catch.
Elliott also said that he received plenty of calls after “the call,” and that one of them came from Packers coach Mike McCarthy.
“He called me at my house last week, because he had heard I was having a rough week with all the calls and everything,” Elliott said. “He just had heard that I was having a rough week, and wanted [me] to know that he thought what I did, controversial and maybe he didn’t agree with it, that I handled it with class.”
Asked for some war stories, Elliott said that Bears quarterback Jay Cutler called Elliott an “M-F-in’ replacement ref” during a game, but that Cutler later offered him water, explaining the profanity by saying that was the only way to get Elliott’s attention.
Referee Jim Core shared an observation regarding Bucs coach Greg Schiano: “He’s college.” Core went on to explain that wasn’t a compliment.
The full interview is worth a listen. But here’s hoping it’s the last we hear from or about the replacement officials.