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Belichick wants to be proactive on replay, but NFL remains reactive

belichickref AP

Patriots coach Bill Belichick proposed a simple rule change this offseason: Instead of allowing coaches to challenge some officials’ calls but not others, simply let a coach throw a challenge flag on any play where he thinks replay will prove the officials got it wrong. Belichick wasn’t asking for more challenges — each coach would still be limited to two challenges a game, with a chance for a third challenge if the first two were correct — but he was asking for more opportunities to get wrong calls right.

Most NFL teams didn’t see it Belichick’s way, however, and coaches will still be restricted to a specified list of wrong calls that they can urge the referee to use replay to get right.

Still, Belichick hopes his ideas on replay will gain traction. Belichick noted that what the NFL usually does is add calls to the list of reviewable plays only after a high-profile mistake. What Belichick is hoping for is allowing the coaches to challenge a mistake before it becomes a big deal.

It wouldn’t give the coach any more challenges,” Belichick said on SiriusXM NFL Radio, via WEEI. “It would just give him a chance to challenge a play he thought was ruled incorrectly. In the grand scheme of things, I think what we all want is to get the play right and for the best team to win and for the game not to be decided by a missed call. To not have the opportunity to correct that type of play, it just doesn’t seem like it’s the right way to do it. We had a situation this year where we added another exception to the replay rule because of a play that came up during the season, and it seems like that’s kind of the way it goes — something happens, and then, we have something else to challenge or make another play challengeable that wasn’t in the past, and we’re just going to keep adding to that. I’d just like to clean it up and have a coach have two challenges, and if he gets them right, he gets a third, and that’s it. He can use it on whatever play he wants.”

Belichick got voted down this year, but he’s not done advocating for improving the replay system. He hopes that he can convince the rest of the league to go along with it.

“I think we probably would bring it up again — maybe change our presentation or try to assemble a little bit more support for it,” he said.

The bottom line is that there are too many bad calls in the NFL. Belichick is going to keep advocating for a rule that allows coaches to ask the referees to fix those bad calls.

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57 Responses to “Belichick wants to be proactive on replay, but NFL remains reactive”
  1. offthelows says: May 24, 2014 7:30 AM

    there’s probably more plays that should be challengeable, but I’d avoid judgement calls or missed judgement calls… and that’s a replay format consistent with the other major sports.

  2. therealbillybuffalo says: May 24, 2014 7:41 AM

    He’s just looking for another “competitive edge”.

  3. audge86 says: May 24, 2014 7:42 AM

    Really hope this happens

    In particular, bad pass interference calls are honestly deciding games. Seen so many receivers trip and crap to fake it

  4. doctorrustbelt says: May 24, 2014 7:45 AM

    belichick and the patriots wouldn’t have won against Cleveland in Week 14 on a bogus last second pass interference penalty that stole the game from Cleveland and playoff home field advantage from the Cincinnati Bengals if replay was available.

  5. 6ball says: May 24, 2014 7:46 AM

    .

    Belichick is correct. We’ve all seen bad calls in a game, only to be told that the play is unreviewable.

    .

  6. jchipwood says: May 24, 2014 7:47 AM

    The day the nfl reviews pass interference calls will be the day billichick and brady will retire because they know its the end of winning at home When the refs can’t give you the game. Funny things happen in new england

  7. fishfan39 says: May 24, 2014 7:50 AM

    I’m not a Belichick fan but why wait for the refs to blow a game changing call BEFORE addressing certain situations? The idea is to get the call right, or at least it should be.

  8. nickinneohio says: May 24, 2014 7:52 AM

    Every play should be reviewable. If your challenge is upheld, they get the play correct. If not, you lose a time out. The 2 or 3 challenge rule never made sense to me. If you have no timeouts, you have no challenges.

  9. Dolphinatic says: May 24, 2014 7:52 AM

    I absolutely agree that everything should be able to be challenged. How many times does a replay show that there never was any pass interference? How many times does a hit to the QB look like roughing the passer in real time, but become much less egregious in replay?

    Answer? TOO MANY.

    Let them get the calls right, and let the coaches challenge to get it right.

    GET IT RIGHT.

  10. footballtalk1 says: May 24, 2014 7:57 AM

    Seattle says no replays and bring back replacement referees.

  11. allhailkingflacco says: May 24, 2014 8:06 AM

    For once I agree with The Hoody.

  12. qdog112 says: May 24, 2014 8:16 AM

    If the objective is to protect the integrity of the SHIELD, then, they have to get the calls right.

    Everybody sees the blown calls and the NFL seems intent on protecting the officials, than getting it right.

    Who ya gonna believe me (NFL) or your lying eyes?

  13. freerayray52 says: May 24, 2014 8:18 AM

    Don’t mind the change, but are there really TOO many bad calls in a game? What is the dividing line between too many and just right? I know the extreme will say 1 bad call is too many.

  14. j0esixpack says: May 24, 2014 8:18 AM

    If replay can show a call was wrong, why shouldn’t it be eligible for challenge?

    No matter how jealous fans are of Belichick and the Patriots they know this is true

  15. greymares says: May 24, 2014 8:26 AM

    The technology would allow booth reviews of every instant replay that is shown to the fans. put a ref in the booth and fix EVERY wrong call. Challenges won’t be needed.

  16. uglydingo says: May 24, 2014 8:32 AM

    I hate to say it but I think Belichick is right.

  17. seabreezes51 says: May 24, 2014 8:44 AM

    Yeah…because “getting it right” is all that Belicheat is concerned with.

  18. ejm845 says: May 24, 2014 8:44 AM

    Of corse he likes replay especially when it’s his oponants practice

  19. jetsjetsjetsnow says: May 24, 2014 8:44 AM

    Bellyache makes way too much common sense here on this subject for the NFL to ever approve it.. They prefer to have the allusion of control

  20. 46dee says: May 24, 2014 9:07 AM

    Score one for the Hoody…

  21. westcoastraider says: May 24, 2014 9:16 AM

    ” I think what we all want is to get the play right and for the best team to win and for the game not to be decided by a missed call.”

    Like say… a Tuck Rule Call that was clearly a fumble????

    One Nation

  22. Punk says: May 24, 2014 9:24 AM

    Yeah, but you don’t want the last two minutes to turn into basketball where you challenge the final play of the game “just in case”

  23. vuudu says: May 24, 2014 9:25 AM

    Some times it hurts so much when you are the only leader with the vision.

  24. hartleechung says: May 24, 2014 9:26 AM

    Love him or hate him, BB is a smart football guy and the game is better with him around.

  25. bullcharger says: May 24, 2014 9:31 AM

    doctorrustbelt says:
    May 24, 2014 7:45 AM
    belichick and the patriots wouldn’t have won against Cleveland in Week 14 on a bogus last second pass interference penalty that stole the game from Cleveland and playoff home field advantage from the Cincinnati Bengals if replay was available.

    —————

    Completely wrong. There was plenty of time left for Brady to punch it in without that call. That call actually gave Cleveland a chance to kick a FG and they missed it. Also, Cleveland gave away the ball on an onside kick that was managed horribly. Cleveland blew that game badly.

  26. GenXJay says: May 24, 2014 9:34 AM

    Everyone in NY knows the hoodie likes cameras

  27. bullcharger says: May 24, 2014 9:42 AM

    westcoastraider says:
    May 24, 2014 9:16 AM
    ” I think what we all want is to get the play right and for the best team to win and for the game not to be decided by a missed call.”

    Like say… a Tuck Rule Call that was clearly a fumble????

    One Nation

    ——————-

    That was called correctly per the rule. If you didn’t like the rule it doesn’t really matter. Also… If the Raiders fans want to bring up ancient history then they should remember when The officials jobbed the Patriots with a phantom pass interference call against Oakland in the 1976 playoffs that cost the Patriots the game. Oakland went on to win the Super Bowl. That call is waaaaay worse then the tuck rule.

  28. northlandwi says: May 24, 2014 9:45 AM

    I think coaches should only get 2 WRONG challenges. Or at least get the third challenge if even one of the first two is a correct challenge.

    To me, they should get as many challenges as they want so long as they all go their way. Once they get two wrong, then its over. Isn’t the point to get calls correct?

  29. bullcharger says: May 24, 2014 9:47 AM

    Pass interference is the number one penalty that needs to be challengable. It’s too big a swing in the game to get it wrong. It should be reviewable if it was called or missed. Same as any other replay, call on the field stands if the replay is not conclusive.

  30. dalcow4 says: May 24, 2014 10:00 AM

    I think Belichick is right, but to be fair he does have more access to camera shots and angles than the NFL does.

  31. unlimitedcriticism says: May 24, 2014 10:15 AM

    ” I think what we all want is to get the play right and for the best team to win and for the game not to be decided by a missed call.”

    Like say… a Tuck Rule Call that was clearly a fumble????

    One Nation
    ———

    Sorry pal. The Tuck Rule may have sucked, but it was the rule and it was applied correctly. Get over it.

  32. thegronk87 says: May 24, 2014 10:16 AM

    Everyone in NY knows belichick won the giants their first 2 Super Bowls.

  33. SBoy says: May 24, 2014 10:22 AM

    Is Belichik smart? Or are the owners just dumb? Maybe both…

    And why exactly are the owners against this?

    Since they’re hesitant… Why not do what they did with original replay and that is do as the Hoody suggests for one season and then require it to be approved by 3/4 vote to keep the following season. Do that until owners are comfortable leaving it that way permanently.

  34. pastabelly101 says: May 24, 2014 10:41 AM

    In 1976 it was actually a Phantom roughing the passer, and the tuck was slight payback for that. The real crime was the unrepentant “they call me assassin” jerk Jack Tatum who crippled Stanley Morgan with a cheap late hit on an over thrown ball in an exhibition game.

  35. theflyingelvis says: May 24, 2014 10:48 AM

    I agree with other commenter’s, I think it’s a stupid rule that coaches are restricted to only three challenges a game. Let’s say the coach uses two challenges and gets them both right. They award him the third challenge. He uses that one and gets it right. And let’s say that all happened in the first half. Is it fair or logical that the coach is now OUT of challenges because of the fact that the refs BLEW three calls already in the first half, FORCING the coach to use the challenges to get the calls right? It should be UNLIMITED challenges as long as the coach keeps getting them right. Once he has accrued two unsuccessful challenges, then he’s out of challenges. It shouldn’t matter if it takes him two challenges to get two wrong or TEN. the way I see it, if it takes coach ten challenges to get two wrong then that means he CORRECTED eight blown calls. Why wouldn’t they want that???

  36. johngaltwho says: May 24, 2014 10:58 AM

    I just dont think the “judgment” calls should be subject to replay. Could you imagine the number of challenges for holding on the offensive line or illegal contact involving receivers who may or may not end up being targets of a pass. It’d be too much.

    On the other hand, any play that could result in points depending on the call should be reviewed. As of now, a controversial touchdown reception is subject to automatic review if it is called a catch but not if it is called an incomplete pass. The play should determine the review, not the call.

  37. thestrategyexpert says: May 24, 2014 11:14 AM

    I like the idea of being proactive, but I still like the part of the game where a coach can really hurt the team by being very stupid. To me every team should have pressure to get good coaches, and if another team can be smarter than you then that team should have opportunities to find an edge.

  38. drudema says: May 24, 2014 11:34 AM

    I love this idea. However, every defensive failure will come with a built in contingency plan. Challenge the play for offensive holding.

  39. piratefreedom says: May 24, 2014 11:38 AM

    Two main types of response:
    1) That’s a good idea regardless of the source.
    2) spittle flecked, semi-coherent irellevant whining about Belichick.

  40. urbusted2 says: May 24, 2014 12:01 PM

    I’d lean towards not doing whatever Mr. Personality, Belichick asks for.

  41. tigerlilac says: May 24, 2014 12:03 PM

    “The officials jobbed the Patriots with a phantom pass interference call against Oakland in the 1976 playoffs that cost the Patriots the game. Oakland went on to win the Super Bowl. That call is waaaaay worse then the tuck rule.”

    Actually, it was a roughing the passer call on a hit by Sugar Bear Ray Hamilton on Kenny Stabler, not a pass interference call. And, yes, it was a horrendous call.

  42. tigerlilac says: May 24, 2014 12:13 PM

    I think Bill is playing a little bit with the psychology of the NFL officiating crew. He is sending a message that bad calls against his team with the game on the line will get added attention. It’s not what the specific discussion is about but the intent is as subtle as your Russian business partner sending two Ukrainians to your door. He can’t get the rule change to favor his team like Bill Polian but most refs will have it in the back of their mind in the last two minutes of a Patriots game.

  43. scw1993 says: May 24, 2014 12:19 PM

    I would address the concerns of raider fans, but I’ll wait until their team is relevant to the game of football do so. The other teams don’t want to approve Belichick’s proposal because they don’t want him to get credit for improving the game.

  44. mellimac says: May 24, 2014 12:23 PM

    Beyond the obvious, getting a call right, it will actually stop the whiners reminiscing about a blown call years after the fact. It will put the heat on the coaches to catch the bad call…if they miss a bad one, their fans and media can only whine about how their team coach blew it, not how the other team stole it.

    Sounds like a win-win to me. With coaches only getting 3 challenges, it won’t slow the game down much more, if at all.

  45. restorativejusticeprogram says: May 24, 2014 12:26 PM

    Gambling rings pay off referees now to make rulings in favor of their bets. This would be less likely to happen if every play was reviewable. Think about the extra income certain refs would lose.

  46. icebowler says: May 24, 2014 12:30 PM

    The TV lords won’t allow any changes that could increase the length of the game any more than it already has been.

  47. cueghost says: May 24, 2014 1:42 PM

    Spot on Belichick! I still hate the Patriots, but he’s got this right. What is the argument against this?

  48. bkostela says: May 24, 2014 2:02 PM

    Let’s say everything can be challenged. We’ve all heard the expression “the refs could call holding on every play if they wanted to.” What’s to stop a coach from challenging holding or illegal contact any time (or at a crucial time) a play doesn’t go their way?

  49. radar8 says: May 24, 2014 2:14 PM

    I agree with Belichick, except about missed-calls. Challenging a bad call is one thing, but there are missed calls on every play.

  50. lanman11 says: May 24, 2014 4:32 PM

    pastabelly101 says:
    May 24, 2014 10:41 AM
    In 1976 it was actually a Phantom roughing the passer, and the tuck was slight payback for that. The real crime was the unrepentant “they call me assassin” jerk Jack Tatum who crippled Stanley Morgan with a cheap late hit on an over thrown ball in an exhibition game.

    **********************************

    It was Darryl Stingley, not Stanley Morgan that was the recipient of that hit. Both Stingley and Morgan were 1st round picks and played their entire careers in New England, with the exception if Morgan trying to hang on for one last year in Indy in 1990. They played together in 1977, until Stingley’s injury in August 1978. Stingley died in 2007 from complications from his injury. Tatum died in 2010 from a heart attack, but had lost parts of both legs to diabetes. While nothing was found to be illegal about the hit, it is hard to watch and seemed excessive for an August exhibition game where the receiver was defenseless and unable to catch the pass (the rules are different today). Tatum never showed any remorse or concern, and later went on to try and profit from the incident with book sales. The two never spoke after the incident. They were to do a joint interview in 1996 but Stingley pulled out when he got wind of Tatum trying to plug his book. Very unfortunate situation.

  51. tigerlilac says: May 24, 2014 5:10 PM

    Stanley Morgan should be in the Hall of Fame. A great wide receiver for his era.

    Career stats: 14 years, 557 receptions, 19.2 yards a catch and 72 touchdowns.

    Compare that to Lynn Swann: 9 years, 336 receptions, 16.3 yards a catch and 51 touchdowns.

  52. raiderapologist says: May 24, 2014 8:43 PM

    tigerlilac says: May 24, 2014 5:10 PM

    Stanley Morgan should be in the Hall of Fame. A great wide receiver for his era.

    Career stats: 14 years, 557 receptions, 19.2 yards a catch and 72 touchdowns.

    Compare that to Lynn Swann: 9 years, 336 receptions, 16.3 yards a catch and 51 touchdowns.
    —————–
    The Steamer was never even a finalist, as far as I can recall. Cliff Branch was another guy that had better numbers than Swann. 14 years, 501 receptions, 17.3 yard average, 67 TDs. Swann did have a crazy average of 22.75 YPC in Super Bowls, while Branch was a pedestrian 12.9, but both had 3 total TDs, Swann in four appearances, and Branch in three.

  53. realmenwearstripes says: May 24, 2014 10:43 PM

    Bill is right on this one.

    Love him or hate him, he has been one of the NFL’s best coaches ever. I wonder what he would be like as a commissioner.

  54. idpfantasyfootball says: May 25, 2014 10:56 AM

    Why are coaches being involved in officiating decisions? Let the coaches coach..!

    The only viable solution is full in-game officiating oversight with an official in a booth or command center that can overrule bad calls (including so-called judgment calls) and buzz down to make calls that are missed. League parity is too great and bad/missed calls that affect outcomes represent financial losses to franchises and cities.

  55. tigerlilac says: May 25, 2014 12:33 PM

    Stanley Morgan even had better stats than John Stallworth, who deserved his induction into the NFL HOF.

    As for Cliff Branch, he was a blast to watch. I’m surprised Morgan had more yards per catch than Branch. It seemed like everything Cliff Branch caught resulted with him flying past a DB.

  56. raiderapologist says: May 25, 2014 8:54 PM

    tigerlilac says: May 25, 2014 12:33 PM

    Stanley Morgan even had better stats than John Stallworth, who deserved his induction into the NFL HOF.

    As for Cliff Branch, he was a blast to watch. I’m surprised Morgan had more yards per catch than Branch. It seemed like everything Cliff Branch caught resulted with him flying past a DB.
    —————-
    No issue with Stallworth in the HOF. He deserved it. Swann, not so much.

  57. bcboncs says: May 27, 2014 7:26 PM

    Usually sports try to improve the accuracy of refereeing but in the NFL too much money is to be made on gambling. Games are fixed. Allowing the public eye to see a fixed outcome is outrageous!

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