Dean Blandino says process of handling balls “will change”

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NFL head of officiating Dean Blandino’s talking to some players at the moment.

And one of them was good enough to share the conversation, and the #asexpected news that things are changing, as it pertains to the handling of the balls.

Colts linebacker Henoc Muamba said on Twitter that Blandino told them: “The process of handling footballs before games will change from here on in in the NFL.”

That seems apparent, given the week we’re in. And it also could be an easy fix, such that the whole #DeflateGate thing couldn’t have been headed off by a few simple steps.

While teams get to offer their own equipment, the addition of (for lack of a better title) a ball steward to inspect and secure them would allow the game officials more control over the process, and perhaps eliminate 100-second trips to the bathroom.

The league has said they’re going to discuss “protocols” for handling footballs during next week’s owners meetings, but Blandino’s suggestion seems to make clear that changes are coming, and soon.

Via Muamba, Blandino also suggested that the possibility of “chips” in the football was being considered and discussed. Whether the chip had anything to do with measuring PSI, or just a simple goal-line technology as is used in soccer remains to be seen.

While keeping a closer eye on the footballs is anticipated, seeing the league take a proactive step would be a nice change as well.

50 responses to “Dean Blandino says process of handling balls “will change”

  1. Hopefully it starts with him getting fired, not only does he not have one quarter of officiating experience. He also repeatedly lied to everyone regarding what he knew

  2. A classic example of why there are so many laws and rules in life. If everyone did what they knew to be right, we wouldn’t have so much red tape in courts and 5000 page rulebooks for sports.

  3. It was incredibly stupid that they allowed this to go on in the first place. Why do complete idiots get to oversee the greatest sport in the world?

  4. Fact : the game referee is tasked with keeping total control of the balls prior to the game. They are never to be out of sight. Walt Coleman said for the first time in 19 years he decided that he would not do his assigned duty on that occasion . If Coleman had done his job, all of this would have been avoided.

  5. Better precautions should take place, but if the balls were as important then as they are now, precautions would have already been in place.

  6. Will Blandino also explain why he said they didn’t get notified of an issue with the balls until halftime of the AFC Championship but the Well’s report clearly states he knew about and also discussed the issue with Walt Anderson before the game?

  7. Will his process of lying to the public about failed NFL sting operations change?

    Why is pft ignoring the story about blandino lying about deflategate?

  8. Why not just let both teams inflate them to whatever they prefer and leave it at that?

  9. Any changes the NFL makes should be viewed as an admission of culpability for this happening in the first place.

  10. I can’t believe people don’t get it. The officials were in on it. Ted wells reports states “colts balls” we’re underinflated but not action was taken on them. Officials used two different gauges that were not calibrated the same and no actions is taken upon the officials? Ted wells reports also states a May 2014 text? Really? May 2014 when the guy only works home games. Since when did the pats get to play in May?? Last thing Arron Rodgers came out and said the officials put his balls at 12.5 and he instructs his ball boy to increase it. He likes his balls over inflated! Is that not tampering with the balls after the officials??? Peyton Manning has also come out and sId he tells his ball boys the same thing especially when an official over inflates. So tired of bashing one man when others have said they do the same thing! Also I would like to see the text message of the colts owners to nfl? Think that will speak volumes.

  11. See the Pats did not cheat. It was the refs who did not do their jobs. Fired the refs.

  12. So, basically, the NFL let the fox guard the henhouse and was then surprised when a few of the hens were missing.

    Goodell has to go, and soon.

  13. Had the geniuses of the NFL figured this out say 20 years or so ago this would not be an issue. It takes them just months to change rules because the Ravens defense was too stupid to figure out a new formation. By the way a formation the Patriots borrowed from the Lions and Jim Caldwell but they can’t figure out it would of been a good idea to ensure there was game ball security. DOPES!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Clearly the league needs someone more adept at handling balls. If the balls are available to be tampered or mishandled, than clearly they don’t have personnel with ball sense. They need a professional ball handler, to keep the balls safe, to protect them, keep them cool and productive. If that’s what’s truly necessary for the balls, we should t blame anyone for violating them prior.

  15. As long as they stop the Officials from cheating, I’m all for it

    For anyone who read the Wells report, we now know that the officials were far more guilty of going beyond the allowable PSI by inflating to 16psi

    Yet people would rather quibble about 1psi easily explained by the Laws of Physics (if the “best recollection” of the official is accepted and not rejected as Wells had to in order to get the outcome he wanted from the report)

    Have the officials inflate to 13psi – not 16psi – and let the teams witness it so they don’t need to deflate the balls to stop the officials from cheating

  16. Blandino should be fired. he lied that gGriggson emailed him about deflated balls. Caught red handed lying in the Wells report. Bye Bye Blandino

  17. Here’s where things get interesting. According (pp. 51-52) to Anderson’s “best recollection,” he used the gauge with a Wilson logo and “the long, crooked needle,” calibrated by Wells’s scientists as finding lower pressure readings, to gauge balls before the game. This is important because if the ref used this gauge that Wells’s scientific consultants measured as taking consistently lower readings, then this would force Wells to rely on this particular gauge for halftime readings. Relying on this gauge clears eight of eleven Pats balls. But in this instance, Wells decided to dismiss Anderson’s “best recollection” and maintain that Anderson used the other gauge before the game. That certainly helps his case but it’s difficult to think of anything that helps one come to that conclusion. His scientists—going against the testimony of a referee entering his twentieth season in the NFL—claim (p. 116) that “Walt Anderson most likely used the Non-Logo Gauge to inspect the game balls prior to the game.” Why? As Mike Florio, who outlines this scandalous aspect of the report, writes: “That’s how investigations that start with a predetermined outcome and work backward unfold.”

  18. Time to see Brady’s stats go back to pre 2006 levels!!!! 1 season with 4000 yards and over 30 td’s. He’s average at best.

  19. The last statement makes me laugh. How is this a proactive step. This is the biggest reactive step that I have ever seen. The NFL is only proactive in steps that attempt to change the game in a negative fashion like trying to eliminate kick returns.

  20. Time to see Brady’s stats go back to pre 2006 levels!!!! 1 season with 4000 yards and over 30 td’s. He’s average at best.
    Haha this troll is a comedian. He also won three superbowls before 2006. Don’t you hate when reality ruins a good troll rant.

  21. THis would make it 3 rules changes to handle the habitual grey area and illegal line stepping the NEP engage in (this offseason), must be a new record.

    Deflate this NEP, suckers

  22. Dean Blandino says process of handling balls “will change”


    Further proof of the NFL admitting they screwed up.

  23. Why not just let both teams inflate them to whatever they prefer and leave it at that?


    Because of integrity of the game or something……

  24. Here’s an idea. One game ball, both teams use it and it doesn’t get switched unless it is damaged. The NBA selects a game ball and that’s it. Enjoy.

    Problem solved.

  25. ok. hopefully someone call explain to me why each team has its on set of footballs ? i can think of a couple of reasons , like wanting to have a certain feel or grip .

    special kicking balls , to me , are another issue . i know why kickers like their own , for the same reason quarterbacks like their “own”.

    But shouldn’t all of the balls come out of one bag , so that each team has the same ball(s) as the other team ?

  26. Why not just let both teams inflate them to whatever they prefer and leave it at that?


    Because of integrity of the game or something……


    Funny, if they changed the rule there would be no breaking it now would there?

  27. Why not just have a ball official. He handles and controls all balls once the game starts, making sure they are all correct, all the time. Teams can use their own for pre-game warmup. I’m pretty sure the NFL can afford one more person on their officiating crews for this duty.

  28. Proactive? The only thing the NFL is proactive about are changes that bring in more money.

  29. I personally think it’s ridiculous that each team uses different sets of footballs inflated to different also. Use the same footballs for both teams and make this process more simple.

  30. NFL really screwed the pooh on this whole thing….Pats balls werent even illegal…

  31. Metropolitan Police Department for the District of Columbia: Our procedure for securing box seats in Ford’s Theater will change.

  32. I’m more concerned about the process of IT WAS A CATCH and whether that has changed.

  33. Brady rule appendix 25382.

    “perhaps eliminate 100-second trips to the bathroom.” < Good point from the story.

  34. There is already protocol. You simply did not do your jobs then bear down on the Patriots to cover your sorry a_ s. The Pats should sue you for not insuring the integrity of the game. Letting the ball boy walk out of the game with the balls 2 times even though you are doing the sting operation. The referee seeing this and not stopping him.The referees not doing their duty. Your own ball-stealing staff trying to make the Pats ball boy pass non-regulation ball to the refs. and try to pin the blame on the ball boy. The Colts tampering with the intercepted ball. Etc. Wouldn’t that be ironic?

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