No major changes expected in aftermath of Rams-Saints

AP

The NFL has a reputation for being reactive, not proactive. In the aftermath of Sunday’s controversial NFC Championship game, the NFL may not even be reactive.

Three days removed from a historic (for good and bad reasons) doubleheader of Super Bowl play-in games, there’s a growing sense that the league will take no significant action to rectify in the future the blatant failure of the officiating crew to flag the Rams for pass interference against the Saints in the final two minutes of the fourth quarter.

“Will never change,” one head coach remarked via text earlier this morning.

It’s been a wild ride since Sunday night. Initially, the league office planned to issue a statement admitting the error. That process became bogged down in a haze of haggling over language. By Monday, the league opted to implicitly accept blame by leaking to select reporters that consideration will be given to expanding the range of plays that can be challenged by coaches, including pass interference. By Tuesday, key figures (including at least one member of the Competition Committee) went on the record to throw water on the idea of making a non-call like the one that happened on Sunday subject to replay review moving forward.

So why won’t the league change? Is it stubbornness? Arrogance?

“Both,” the coach replied, adding that there’s likely a belief that the circumstances that unfolded on Sunday won’t happen again.

But they will. Or, at a minimum, circumstances like them will. And the league seems to be prepared to assume that inexplicable mistakes made by officials won’t undermine the integrity of or public confidence in the game of professional football, because the public won’t ever vote with their eyes, feet, and wallets.

Sure, the public will huff, and the public will puff. But the public won’t be blowing anyone’s house down, because the NFL currently has no competition on Sundays, Mondays, Thursdays, and a few Saturdays from September through early February.

That’s still no way to run any business. The league always should strive to improve its product, and Sunday’s NFC game makes it as clear as clear can be that improvements are needed. But it costs more money to improve the performance of officials (including making all of them full-time employees) and a new embrace of technology could have unintended consequences (a common crutch to justify inaction).

So the league will likely do nothing because the league doesn’t have to do anything. And because, at a certain level, the league doesn’t want to be pushed into doing something by fans, media, politicians, lawyers, bloggers and/or anyone else who hasn’t earned membership in a clique whose members revel peering down their noses at those who can be quickly dismissed as not knowing what they’re talking about, simply because they haven’t officially gained admission to the football-guy club.

108 responses to “No major changes expected in aftermath of Rams-Saints

  1. Just give the head of officiating the ability to intervene in instances of egregious errors by officials (whether penalties are called or not) that may change the outcome of a game. Don’t limit him or her to a set of events – just any error by officials that may change the outcome. Fire Riveron and rehire Blandino. Problem solved.

  2. How Goodell retains his job is one of the great mysteries of human history. Eventually the sun will expand and destroy Earth and Goodell will just be sitting there behind his desk floating through space.

  3. Why not make it so only the booth can review PI and it must be in the last two minutes of the game. Seems like an easy compromise?

  4. Mike,

    The league can’t address it or change it because it goes much deeper than integrity…

    What we witnessed Sunday afternoon was the result of sports betting…that’s what needs to be investigated here…

  5. Give coaches two challenges for any play, any play including off sides, pass interference..anything. This would in no way extend the game but would get all calls right.

  6. “That’s still no way to run any business. The league always should strive to improve its product, and Sunday’s NFC game makes it as clear as clear can be that improvements are needed.”

    If you want proactive changes versus reactive changes then you don’t argue for the expansion of video review – which is in and of itself a reactive change. If you want to be proactive here is what you do. Simplify the rulebook. You go through with a fine tooth comb and get rid of anything that you don’t call or enforce. You provide the refs with a clear explanation of how and what to call. Second, you disband the refs union. Keeping incompetent refs around because they are unionized is not good for the game. You hire full time refs, pay them well. If this means getting rid of 65 year old refs, good. These guys need to be smart, in good shape and need to have their feet put to the fire when they are affecting the outcomes of games. Having the backing of a union does not help the product on the field. It lowers the competition level among refs, decreases their accountability and my third point. You need to increase transparency. We know what player received what fine for every infraction every week. You do the same for every missed call and ref infraction. You fine them and penalize them. If you incentivize good performance by the refs, they will perform better. No need to expand replay if the refs do a better job on the field and the NFL invests more both monetarily and in resources to better equip those refs.

  7. The best solution that wouldn’t be that big of a change is PFT’s suggestion to put an official in the booth that can see the play from different angles than are possible on the field. It’s better to get the call right in the first place than to expand what the coaches can challenge.

  8. Bad calls are part of the game not like anyone was playing favorites due to the different tvnarkets of the 2 cities. Kinda like the lights going out at the SuoerBowl for no apparent reason. But that happens all the time right? Just bad “ wiring”

  9. On the one hand, while they may not be able to completely fix, but they should try to improve.

    On the other hand, when some people spend their entire lives denigrating the League for just about everything it does or doesn’t do, it’s not hard to understand why the NFL would resist demands by such people.

  10. “stevenhobbs83 says:
    January 23, 2019 at 11:00 am
    Why not make it so only the booth can review PI and it must be in the last two minutes of the game. Seems like an easy compromise?”

    Because next year there will be a holding call that affects an outcome and the owner will grandstand, the players will whine, the coach will get fined for cussing out the refs and then we’ll expand the 2 minute review more. And so on and so on. It is not fixing the problem, it’s simply a bandaid too small to every cover the bleeding and every year they’ll argue in favor or a bigger bandaid.

  11. the SB historically has had fewer penalties called. I wonder if this noise will cause the SB refs this year to maybe not swallow their whistles as much?

  12. In reality, other than allow penalties to become part of the current review procedure, what were they going to do? It was one of many blown calls made or not made during both games. Unfortunately, they happen, and will continue to happen. It just so happened that this was a playoff game. However, there were calls all year long that may have made differences for teams that fell just short of the playoffs. I’ve never been a believer in blaming bad calls, but I would be lying if I said that I’ve never felt the Steelers were cost the game by one or more. But, at the same time, they have won games with the benefit of a call here or there. So, it evens out, happens to every team.

  13. Would they have reviewed the at least 5 penalties on the Saints before the pass interference at the end? If the Saints get called for those, that game isn’t “iceable” at the end. Both teams had BLATENT missed calls against them. Get over it already.

  14. Mistakes will always happen. I have lost count from all the years of watching football the number of times the Rams were on the wrong side of bad calls. It goes both ways and that’s just life. Football is not the only sport this happens in. I have seen numerous basketball games and soccer matches where blatant fouls/penalties were not called.

    Saint fans need to stop whining and just accept that officiating is a non perfect system and more often then not, officials in high profile games swallow their whistles for fear of deciding the outcome.

  15. If there’s any one consistent thread to how the league conducts itself during any scandal in the Roger Goodell era, it’s that it is political. And the first rule of politics is to never admit to weakness. In this situation, any statement, even the most carefully worded one, cannot escape the optics of weakness. They blew it, they know it, and they know that we know they blew it. So they are buying time, waiting for memories to fade a bit. I’m guessing at off-season league meetings they will implement new rules for 2019 that will fix this. And in the meantime they will pray that nothing like the Rams/Saints scandal happens on the biggest stage on Feb. 3.

  16. How Goodell retains his job is one of the great mysteries of human history. Eventually the sun will expand and destroy Earth and Goodell will just be sitting there behind his desk floating through space.

    Comment of the year. Man, I chuckled really hard at that image.

  17. They review score and turnovers as they are deemed important events. It seems to me that there are also occasionally other important events worth a review. But, this should be limited in number.

  18. This controversy is the best thing that could have happened to the league. They are getting a lot of free publicity right now.

  19. This has been happening in games since the AFL and NFL merged. It happens every week during the regular season. There are calls every week that cost some team a game. Get over it you’re never going to take the human error out of it. There were at least three or four plays that should of been flagged before the PI. There were even calls in the game against Philadelphia the week before which could of effected the outcome of that game.

    Do the Saints think for some reason they need special treatment? Sorry Saints fans, you got your special treatment in the 2009 NFC championship game. By rule Section 12, article 14, b. “ A team is allowed special treatment in a playoff game only once every 25 years, unless there are special circumstances.” These circumstances will be decided by the commissioner only and not not reviewable.

  20. This is a huge gap in the officiating. Doing nothing exposes the league to its own Tim Donaghy situation. One could argue that it already exist.

  21. I’m firmly a believer that that one abysmal no-call did not cost the Saints the game in and of itself…but the tone-deafness of the league is astounding here. That cannot happen in such a big game with so much on the line (and right in front of an official no less). But if it does…you d@mn sure should be able to fix it.

  22. As a Vikings fan, I’ll say I am by no means a fan of the Saints, but that was the WORST, most obvious and flagrant non-call of all time. And it CERTAINLY makes me question the integrity of the game for the first time in my life. There’s no way that play gets missed… and now we’ve got an LA/Boston Superbowl. So strange (rolls eyes).

    I’ve never been a conspiracy theorist, always shot down talk of the “NFL is rigged” variety. But I can’t do that anymore cause I’m not so sure that it isn’t rigged.

  23. The media thanks their lucky stars for the non-call. It gives them something to chew to the bone every day between now and the SB. The Gift that keeps on giving.

  24. I still don’t understand why they don’t allow additional plays to be challenged. No additional challenges, no video official, simply let all the things including the hot buttons right now be reviewed: PI, offsides, face masks, etc. If anything, it will probably speed up the game as coaches will think twice before challenging 8 yard completions in the 2nd quarter. They’ll probably want to save them for more important plays and/or for later in the game.

  25. It won’t float, but “Challenge anything” with the same number of challenges and timing. It won’t change the game length much, but it would have impacted both championship games.

  26. There is no way to really address the problem.

    If you make Pass Interference a Challengable call, it will be used as an asset by every team at the end of the game. There is Pass Interference on every play, so if you are down by 7 with 50 seconds left you just throw the ball as far down the sideline as you can. Either your player catches the pass, or you use your challenge to get the ball there.

  27. I am not sure why anybody thinks the NFL would have any integrity when it comes to its product. The NFL is in the entertainment business, and it’s purpose like any other business is to make money. If people don’t believe that outcomes can be manipulated to to get the desired result they are being foolish. Everyday there is news of businesses doing things that are considered to be immoral.

  28. I am not sure why anybody thinks the NFL would have any integrity when it comes to its product. The NFL is in the entertainment business, and it’s purpose like any other business is to make money. If people don’t believe that outcomes can be manipulated to to get the desired result they are being foolish. Everyday there is news of businesses doing things that are considered to be immoral.

  29. Well, Belichick is a member of “The Football-Guy Club” and he’s got plenty to say about it. Listen to him.

  30. There won’t be any changes because the NFL regards itself as sports entertainment and not a contested sport. The NFL lawyers admitted that in a 2010 court case regarding branded merchandise. The only other sports entertainment businesses are pro wrestling and roller derby. The NFL is scripted entertainment.

  31. 3 officials with ties to the Los Angeles area, one being a former Rams player, deliberately creating a natural bias in the way the Saints Rams game was officiated. Anyone that doesn’t think the league is rigged now is missing a few screws.

  32. I am a proponent of being able to review any play that is challenged. However, I can see how that is too big of a change.

    What may be better is just to add a replay team to every officials crew and have them in his ear when he makes calls. If they throw a flag because they saw contact and the replay officials say there was absolutely no contact, then you pick up the flag. no need to say it was a replay official that saw it. Just move on. Similarly if it is clear there is head to head contact, when you confer with the other officials and the replay officials you throw the flag. Do it in real time.

  33. Refs miss plays all the time, not a chance you could miss that one. ! ref in picture looking right at it. Im neither a Saints or Rams fan

  34. I don’t want to see any changes. 3 hours is long enough. What will be pass interference? If is hand touches the receiver a 1/10th of a second before the ball arrives? Hands to the face? Can see that on almost every play – on both sides of the ball.

  35. As long as there is a human element in officiating, these mistakes will happen. Sure, maybe a review of PI penalties/non-calls would fix a few obvious mistakes. However, most cases of PI are not blatant like the one Sunday, and thus, on most plays there will still be disagreement, even with review. There is so much hand fighting/pushing/grabbing between DBs and WRs during routes that I often feel like PI could be called against either team on many plays. I don’t think instant replay means we are going to get universal (or even majority) agreement on many of these PI calls.

    Perfect example of the imperfect nature of instant replay is the Edelman punt return from AFC Championship. Did he or didn’t he touch it? I never saw a review that definitively showed it either touch or miss his hand. So there will be disagreement that cannot be resolved by the instant replay review.

    Its unfortunate that the officials missed such a clear penalty in such a big situation in one of the most important games of the year. But its not the first time it happened and won’t be the last time either, since officials are human an make mistakes. Unfortunately, even with instant replay, not all these errors are corrected.

  36. “But it costs more money to improve the performance of officials (including making all of them full-time employees)”
    ===============================

    Please explain how full-time employees would make a single difference.

    As I pointed out in another thread, the Side Judge Cavaletto who missed the call, has been a NFL official since 2003. He has been in 240 games and seen over 28,000 NFL plays (plus another 20,000+ from college ranks before moving up). He knows the rulebook. He knows the little tricks WRs and DBs uses to push the rule limits. He probably also knows that he could throw a flag on every single play for OPI/DPI. HE MADE A MISTAKE. IT HAPPENS.

    And what is a full-time employee have to do?

    – There’s no game film from an official’s field viewpoint to watch. Having access to the All-22 film is pointless. Cavaletto’s assignment is the WR/DB – that’s it. He doesn’t care what offense package is out there or the defensive scheme is.

    – The NFL Rulebook is not that big. Throw out the non-game stuff (field markings, equipment rules, OT procedures, uniforms, timing procedures, etc) and it’s only a dozen pages.

    – practice? Where? The CBA limits practices to 1-2 times a week. Even the players aren’t going 100% game speed that requires real officating.

  37. The more I’ve thought about it, the less I think “challenge everything” is a good policy. The reality of some kind of minor infraction being committed on almost every play would result in teams fishing for minor penalties to overturn the biggest plays the opponent makes.

    In the end, I think the best thing may just be more accountability for officials. The officials who missed the PI call should be suspended, fined and have to go through additional training (and assignment to lesser games) to be reinstated, and if they’re not judged to have progressed enough, then fired.

    That last missed PI call was a disgrace, but there were other game-changing calls/non-calls as well (like the non-facemask call that would have put the Rams at 1st and goal on the prior drive). You pull this thread and the whole thing unravels.

    Technology is superior to humans in observing the game. Do we want it defined by technology, or humans? I think I’ll take humans.

  38. This no call is bigger then just the lack of a penalty or sports betting. It has to do with the bigger market teams. The NFL wants 5 million dollars for 30 second commercial versus 4 million. As always with the NFL greed is the factor. The integrity of the sport hangs in the balance.

  39. I’m not surprised in the least.

    After that obvious high profile debacle, they had to look like they were going to do something about. In the end, they just did enough for some of the attention on it to subside publicly.

    They never had any intention of actually changing their main way to sway the outcome of games in favor of the larger market teams.

  40. Easiest fix I have ever come across in the NFL.

    Goodel has everyone looking in the wrong direction and is spinning your brains in a blender.

    Belichick (who should be the NFL Commissioner) made CLEAR the OBVIOUS = Head Coaches have a Red Challenge Flag for Logical, Fair and Integrity Worthy support of the Rules.

    Give them the opportunity to use that Flag, such as this, and according to NFL Rules, the CORRECT Call is made and the HIGHEST appropriation of Fairness & Integrity is displayed for all the World to see on National TV.

    It is that Liar/Goodel who opposes such Power in the hands of HCs because it would diminish his corrupt manipulation over the NFL.

  41. sb44champs says:
    January 23, 2019 at 11:35 am

    3 officials with ties to the Los Angeles area, one being a former Rams player, deliberately creating a natural bias in the way the Saints Rams game was officiated.

    ===============

    Then why didn’t they call the facemask on Goff on the prior drive that would have put the Rams 1st and goal with a chance to go up by 4?

  42. One of the few things that soccer gets right: The soccer referee is god of that field. What he says, goes.

    The NFL should have a similar setup, where someone with authority and a little common sense can override the rule book to arrive at common-sense answers to seemingly easy questions such as “Did that dude catch the ball?” or “Was that dude in or out of bounds?”‘

    We don’t need to legislate this game to death. Just empower a referee, either on or off the field, to overrule the rule book and produce a common-sense result.

  43. Next year they should make it a “point of emphasis” to (make an effort to) enforce penalties consistently no matter what stage of the season or any particular game. I’m still waiting for the flag on Ed Reed when he was in the 49ers backfield before the ball was even snapped in the final drive of their SB.

    For pass interference I think they should look at abolishing the penalty for illegal contact after 5 yards. I think this rule may have the unintended consequence of a lot of PIs not being called because the ref doesn’t want to make a “ticky tack” call or,if he does,he overlooks a legitimate PI as a “make-up call” for an earlier soft call.

  44. There doesn’t have to be any correlation between using more replay and making the games longer. I can sit there on my couch and make the correct call within 2 seconds (before the ball ever stops rolling), and they can put guys in the booth that would have a lot better video equipment than I do. I really think the delays were a manufactured way of turning the public against replay. The guys in the booth could literally radio into the ear of the guys on the field within 2 seconds. Having said all that, there been blown calls in championship games for decades, and there always will be. The 49ers really got jobbed in the 1983 championship game vs. the Redskins. Three phantom calls in the closing minutes that stole the game from the 49ers. That wasn’t by accident. I don’t think the call last Sunday was by accident either. It’s kind of like when they say you don’t want to see how they make sausage. We might be better off if we don’t investigate why they’re messing around with the outcome these games.

  45. I was so looking forward to the Championship games…usually among the best of the year. And while neither team was my team, that missed call really spoiled my enjoyment of/interest in football. I half-heartedly tuned in to the Chiefs-Pats game and skipped chunks of it.

    I’ll still watch and cheer for my team, but my interest in the NFL is waning — something that was unfathomable five years ago. Super Bowl? who cares?

  46. That was a bad no call…. we can all agree on that…. people are acting like it’s the 1st time it ever happened…. ITS NOT!!!! & yes, it stinks when it happens to your team…..HOWEVER, the
    Game went into overtime…Saints had the ball & were even at home…….they lost…..
    Get over it already!!!!

  47. They’d screw up any change they made so doing nothing is the best thing. They have NEVER in the history of replay been able to confine themselves to fixing only obvious blown calls. They CONSTANTLY overrule borderline calls that should be left to stand. This would inevitably result in what had been a no-call on the field (incidental contact, both receiver and defender engaging in incidental hand-fighting, etc) becoming a 50-yard, game-deciding penalty. They’d do that 10 times for every obviously blown call they fixed. There’s no doubt that is how it would work out.

  48. Nothing will change because the NFL knows that people won’t stand up and demand change. Look how fast they successfully changed the narrative from a blatant and purposeful non-call that prevented a team from outright winning a game, to a “blown call” that everyone is supposed to believe was an accident and human error. The refs can spot minor fouls from across the field successfully all the time, but everyone is supposed to believe that none of them saw this happen?

    As long as the majority of the audience is willing to sweep these things under the rug and move on, that’s exactly what will keep happening.

  49. jman967 says: “You need to increase transparency. We know what player received what fine for every infraction every week. You do the same for every missed call and ref infraction. You fine them and penalize them. If you incentivize good performance by the refs, they will perform better.”
    =========================

    Players only get fined for dangerous behaviour or illegal hits. Players OFTEN make game mistakes on the field: missing blocking assignment, running the wrong routes, throwing interceptions, whiffing on jamming a WR, etc. They don’t get fine or penalized (or even announced publicly).

    The Side Judge Cavaletto made a bad judgment call – that’s it.

  50. It shouldn’t change. There is holding on every play. There’s contact between receivers and corners on every play. If every single play is reviewed closely, there will be a penalty on every single play, and games will last 5-6 hours. Do fans, players, and coaches really want that just to satisfy whining Saints? Saints fans are actually suing the NFL to redo the game. This is how deluded the Saints are. Then every losing team will want a do over.

  51. it’s funny how most people on here are on this “keep it the way it is” until of course it’s your team on the wrong end. raider fans still fuss about the tuck rule (even though it was on the books), viking fans still complain about bountygate (even though the saints were never heavily penalized for personal fouls, roughing, etc.), and all fans complain about qb hits because of brady’s injury back in the day. the funny thing is that the nfl changed the ot rule because the saints scored on the first drive with a field goal…but they won’t look at something that literally can change the outcome of a game to the right one. ok. i’ll be waiting when the next fanbase is complaining about something that happened to their team. 🙂

  52. Any true fan of the NFL should be very concerned about what we witnessed Sunday because it could easily happen to your team.
    I just don’t think it wasn’ as simple as a referee missing a call. It was more of a referee refusing to make a call and that is extremely concerning.

  53. >>>There is no way to really address the problem.

    If you make Pass Interference a Challengable call, it will be used as an asset by every team at the end of the game. There is Pass Interference on every play, so if you are down by 7 with 50 seconds left you just throw the ball as far down the sideline as you can. Either your player catches the pass, or you use your challenge to get the ball there.<<<

    And for reasons that you so eloquently explained that's why they'll never make a rule change where you can challenge a non-flag play. The rules already favor the offenses so they're not going to give them another possible weapon to use. What they'll do perhaps at best would be to allow pass interference penalties to be challenged in order to help eliminate the bogus ones that are called that everyone has complained about. Late flags are another annoyance and every fan screams when one is thrown well after a play on their team. Imagine a conference with refs watching replay after replay for minutes and then throwing a flag on a play where one hadn't been thrown. Let the first fan of the penalized team after such a conference step up and agree to it. You think there's screaming now going on think of what it would be like on a weekly basis. And that's why they'll never be a rule change to allow non-flagged plays to be challenged. Never going to happen. Flagged plays, yes. Non flagged plays, no.

  54. Then why didn’t they call the facemask on Goff on the prior drive that would have put the Rams 1st and goal with a chance to go up by 4?
    =========================
    Because the refs may have honestly missed that one… plus they can’t make their natural bias look too obvious to the casual observers

  55. mmornhinweg says: “It has to do with the bigger market teams. The NFL wants 5 million dollars for 30 second commercial versus 4 million. As always with the NFL greed is the factor. The integrity of the sport hangs in the balance.”
    ========================

    Yet the Saints were ALLOWED to win the SB in 2010. Why? Same can be said about other small market teams like Indianapolis, Baltimore, Pittsburgh…

    On the flipside, why are the Giants and Jets losing in the biggest market? Shouldn’t Goodell fix this for them? And it’s not like the other Top 10 market size teams like the Cowboys, Bears or Redskins are anywhere close to the SB.

  56. I think refs treated situation like last few seconds of a basketball game where refs eat whistle when a player is driving to the hoop. They did not want it to be decided by a penalty. Had the Saints been behind by 7 they probably would have gotten the call. But with the game tied they decided to let them play.

  57. I am not surprised here. This is the same NFL office that went to the mattress over missing air in a football, and gave us lectures about “integrity of the game,” but won’t do anything about this blatant error, which IS about “integrity of the game.” This is the same NFL office who changed the catch rules in the middle of last year’s Super Bowl, as well. I am not surprised they’re that arrogant to not do anything here.

  58. mmornhinweg says: “The NFL wants 5 million dollars for 30 second commercial versus 4 million. As always with the NFL greed is the factor.”
    ========================

    Drew Brees now alone probably would draw more viewers that Jared Goff and the whole LA market.

    Regardless, over 100 million people will watch the Super Bowl. As for your commercial airtime, they were sold out months ago.

  59. This wasn’t the only time this has happened. A few years ago Detroit/Dallas in the wild card round of the playoffs there was a play where the Dallas defender tackled the Lions TE (I think it was Brandon Pettigrew). The official threw the flag, but then they picked it up with no explanation. Wasn’t the championship game, but it would have all but iced the game for the Lions advancing them to the next round. Ironically the Cowboys lost the following week on the Dez Bryant “non-catch”.

  60. Why would there be? The NFL got what they wanted….LA and East Coast Markets for the SB.

    You would think Goodell would at least state how the importance of getting calls correct is crucial to the integrity of the game.

    His silence states it all….they don’t care as long as the ratings are great and commercial sales are strong.

  61. I’m not so sure what the Saints fans hope to gain by this outrage, other than an opportunity to vent their frustrations at the final score. Yes the blown call was egregious, but it isn’t impacting owner wallets, so Roger will let it ride.

    I’m sure the league is drooling over the LA Rams going to the Super Bowl, but that had nothing to do with the ref’s call.

  62. sb44champs,

    i wouldn’t even argue. they are going to hold onto that facemask (where he never got a hold of goff’s facemask) as their outlier. the funny part is the brandin cooks facemask is the one that ram and falcon fans should be holding onto. lol

  63. I’d say 160 Million fans now questioning whether the game is fixed or the NFL is incompetent is something that will change.

  64. I’ve said it before, get some young, full time, refs and there will be less chance of that happening. Leaving any game in the hands of a part time 60 plus year old man is a travesty!

  65. This is so easy (which is why the NFL won’t adopt it) Give **ONE** penalty review per team, inside of five minutes in the 4th quarter. Let it carry over to Over-Time if they’ve not used it. That’s it. Simple rule that wouldn’t destroy the flow of a game and could stop nonsense like the end of the Saints game. A stinking ref shouldn’t decide who’s in the Superbowl.

  66. Of course there will be no major changes. The league got exactly what they wanted. The Saints should have expected that no call.

  67. There was a visible facemask on Jared Goff on second-and-goal late in the game with the Saints up 20-17. Had that been called, the Rams would have had first-and-goal and a very good shot to go up 24-20. Other missed calls included a facemask committed by the Saints against Rams receiver Brandin Cooks, and a delay of game that preceded a Saints touchdown in the third quarter.

  68. If the main issue is that the game occasionally goes too fast for the refs and they sometimes have to monitor too many things at once, then maybe officiating crews should just be expanded. More eyes should equal more accuracy.

  69. The NFL should just hire a team of Millenials to form a hindsight committee of rules they’d like to retro-actively apply to soothe their feelings.

  70. The Saints had home-field advantage, they won the opening game coin toss, they had a 13 point lead in the first half, they won the coin toss in OT and got the ball first, and they have a quarterback who threw 32 touchdowns to 5 interceptions in the regular season with a record 74.4 completion percentage. What happened, Saints’ fans? Are you all angry you didn’t have a 5th advantage going into this game? The team deserved to lose. Protest your quarterback throwing a costly pick in OT.

  71. Why would there be? Because the Saints fans are sore losers and shut down listening when you remind them of the multiple chances they still had to win the game?

    The CHIEFS got robbed, not the Saints.

  72. Too many people discussing this are pretending that was the only terrible non-call of the game. There were tons on both sides.

    Fire the officials, but recognize that incompetence benefiting both sides cancels out and the better team won.

  73. People still talking about market size. I don’t get it. This is not 1975. Individual players are marketed (if not nauseatingly so) to the hilt. Games are hyped up as two QBs facing each other when sane people know this isn’t the case. It does not matter where the team is located, the league benefits on brand regardless. The league doesn’t NEED the New York teams to be great (in any sport) anymore. They are more concerned with ROI with the players who they hype up to be more than they are. One, they have done this with for 18 years, and they’re on their way to doing it with another who never got a shot in OT on Sunday.

  74. No major rule change needed..just fire the back and side judges from that game, and you’ll be fine. Most refs would have seen what Robey-Coleman did and flagged it. Vinovich’s crew let him down.

  75. It’s been well-known that officials don’t call as many penalties in the postseason. They let the players play. If anything needs to come of this, it’s that the league needs to make sure that officials are not afraid to throw flags for obvious penalties like the Robey-Coleman play in postseason. They could/should have called 2 penalties on the play, and instead called none. It is especially disturbing that the helmet-to-helmet wasn’t called, since the NFL is supposedly so concerned about player safety. Call the obvious holds, PIs, personal fouls, etc. and let the marginal ones go. There have to be rules/penalties, otherwise why have them?

  76. The league makes billions and could easily afford 2 extra officials in the defensive backfield to look out for infractions in this pass-happy league. Naw, let’s just keep it winging it…

  77. While many are talking about the blown PI call in the NFC game, another egregiously bad call was the “Roughing” the passer call against the Chiefs at the 7:05 minute mark of the AFC game? While he still held the ball, Brady was patted on the left shoulder by the Chief pass rusher . NO contact to the head; NO tackle; NO knockdown; Absolutely nothing to justify the flag that gave the Pats a 1st down instead of 3rd & 7. NFL needs badly to revisit the recent rule changes protecting quarterbacks, and how they are interpreted and enforced. Let’s make football violent again!

  78. The rules will only change when one of the coveted “large market” franchises faces something like this.

  79. Kevin Kohorst says:
    January 23, 2019 at 5:48 pm

    While many are talking about the blown PI call in the NFC game, another egregiously bad call was the “Roughing” the passer call against the Chiefs at the 7:05 minute mark of the AFC game? While he still held the ball, Brady was patted on the left shoulder by the Chief pass rusher . NO contact to the head; NO tackle; NO knockdown; Absolutely nothing to justify the flag that gave the Pats a 1st down instead of 3rd & 7. NFL needs badly to revisit the recent rule changes protecting quarterbacks, and how they are interpreted and enforced. Let’s make football violent again!

    _______________________________________________________________

    How about all the missed holds on Gronk and Edelman in the 3rd and 4th quarters? How about the guy holding Philip Dorsett on his touchdown catch? What about Kelce’s fumble at the end of the 4th quarter and how the refs just so happen to call a phantom holding on the Patriots’ defense on the exact same play? The list goes on and on.

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