NFL’s head of officiating will make all replay decisions

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The NFL has its message down pat: The instant replay “process” isn’t changing. That’s what league officials and the NFL’s head of officiating repeated Friday during the first day of their annual officiating clinic.

But what has changed is who makes replay decisions under the NFL’s new centralized system.

“The process hasn’t changed,” Alberto Riveron, the league’s senior vice president of officiating, said. “We’ve had the same process in place now for three years, so the only thing that’s changed about the process that instead of the final decision being with the referee on the field, it’s now with New York.

“Again, we go back to the process. The referee goes and speaks with the coach, stops the game, makes an announcement, consults with us in New York. In the meantime, while he’s had that conversation with the coach, we are gearing up in New York and showing up the best possible angles, and then the final decisions will be made in New York. But the consultation process, the way we look at the film, the plays we show him, the angles, that hasn’t changed one bit.”

Riveron said plans are for him to make every decision. However, Wayne Mackie, the league’s vice president of officiating evaluation and development, and Russell Yurk, the league’s vice president of instant replay and administration, will provide assistance, especially if multiple replays happen simultaneously.

“Ultimately, I’m making the decisions,” said Riveron, who was a veteran game official for nine seasons. “But that’s why, like before when it was Dean [Blandino] and myself in that room, now we’re going to have Wayne Mackie, Russell Yurk, and myself in the room, so if I’m tied up in a replay, somebody else will be looking at that, but ultimately I will be involved in every decision-making process.”

Riveron will communicate with the referee, who now will use a tablet on the sideline to view the play in question, before Riveron makes his decision. Previously, referees made replay decisions after consulting a monitor under a hood on the sideline. The new system mirrors that of the NHL and MLB.

“Obviously, I’ll have the same input that I’ve had in the past, but then the final decision will be made in New York,” referee Walt Coleman said. “That’s obviously to be consistent, so instead of 17 referees deciding stuff, the people in New York will be deciding. I think that it will help with consistency on the calls, because what I think is an incomplete pass might not necessarily be what another referee thinks. I think it’s good, and I think it helps for consistency and so forth. The process is pretty much the same other than where the final decision comes from.”

The move to centralized replay intends to streamline the process and quicken the pace of reaching a decision. Referees insist they have no problem with having the final decision taken out of their hands.

“I have never had a situation where New York and I differed on what we were going to do, so it will still be seamless,” referee Brad Allen said. “The fact that in most circumstances, we’re not physically going to be under a hood, we are going to be looking at a tablet, it’s a little different.

“We just don’t see it as an issue; we really don’t.”

13 responses to “NFL’s head of officiating will make all replay decisions

  1. “Ultimately I make all decisions”……. the name is spelled R-I-V-E-R-O-N… Alberto, and if you wish to have the PayPal address, or my crowd funding account…..

  2. Oh Alberto. What have you done? First thing you do is shut down your @AlbertoRiverton account. Next, encourage your wife to disable her account too. Then, delete your FB pages. Finally, you should have your internet footprint professionally scrubbed, as you will be doxxed if you do not.

    I would also recommend that anyone named anything similar to his name change their twitter handle. Trolls aren’t that thorough and really don’t care about collateral damage.

    Seriously, you want fans of 16 NFL teams blaming that week’s loss on your replay calls? I would need at least 7 figures/year for that.

  3. Right, so one clown has the right to make game changing calls base on what he alone thinks is the right one. That’s always worked out in the past. What a joke.

  4. So now we’ll have 3 NFL honchos in New York making replay calls…TELL ME AGAIN WHAT CONSTITUTES A CATCH???

  5. So, what happens when his laptop re-boots in the middle of the review, or, he has a little rotating circle for ten minutes, or, his ISP craps the bed in the middle of the games? Imagine the denial of service attack on the NFL during sunday games.

    Florio, give us what they plan to do in that case.

  6. If the guy in NYC makes all the decisions, then why does the referee even look at the replay? (other than the lucrative product placement on the TV screens) It would be quicker to just put a direct line at every game. Coach tosses a red hanky (or booth buzzes), referee picks it up, walks to the phone on either sideline, picks it up, listens to the BS call, walks out on the field, announces the decision, blows whistle to start the play clock.

  7. That is total BS why have game officials at all now all games will hinge on the opinion of one guy…. anyone hear payoff….?? to get to the playoff… se what I did there a little play on words… NFL stinks!!!!

  8. @bert1913

    How did blandino beingon the party bus work out for dez in GB ? You hapless stooge

  9. Translation – Goodell makes all replay decisions. Pats will be 0-30 on all replay calls this season.

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