John Parry: Pass interference review opens Pandora’s Box

Getty Images

John Parry retired as an NFL referee after officiating Super Bowl LIII, so he won’t ever work a game that includes a replay review to determine whether a pass interference foul occurred during a play.

Parry’s final game featured an incomplete pass to Rams wideout Brandin Cooks while he was covered and contacted by Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore. No flag was thrown on the play, but NFL senior V.P. of officiating Al Riveron has said that it would be a foul if reviewed under the rule adopted this offseason.

In an interview with Jonathan Jones of SI.com, Parry agreed there was contact but doesn’t believe it significantly hindered Cooks’ ability to catch the ball. He also doesn’t seem to believe that the move to a rule that would turn the play into a penalty is a step in the right direction.

“What do I think of it? I’ve wrestled with this since late February from being involved with the competition committee, and I don’t think a day goes by where I wonder is this good? Could this be done differently? Is there a better way? I have tried to convince myself that where we’re headed is good. I can’t get there, I just can’t get there. I’m struggling with it. . . . People talk about sky judge, well both teams have five to eight assistants in a booth with video. They’re the best sky judges we have. So we kind of already have that but no one talks about it in that way. Then you get to what do we look at? Pass interference or player-safety fouls or what? It’s Pandora’s Box that they’ve opened.”

Parry will be working for ESPN as a rules analyst this season, which means we’ll likely be hearing from him about this rule several more times before the year is out.

13 responses to “John Parry: Pass interference review opens Pandora’s Box

  1. No call was the right call.

    This is going to end up like touchdowns, where if it’s close Riverton wants the flags to be thrown and let slow motion replay figure it out. Keep the officiating on the field, not in the booth / league office.

    The rule standard is “The contact clearly and obviously seen must “significantly hinder” the player being fouled.” Cooks was not significantly hindered on the play. This play should be highlighted as an example of “insignificantly hindered.” Has the league even defined what “insignificantly hindered” means?

    Addressing something egregious like the Saints – Rams play is fine and maybe needed, but making the rule second guess every call or no call made on the field is literally a game-changer.

  2. Everybody has an excuse as to why it won’t work in the NFL, but the CFL has allowed coaches to challenge pass interference calls/non-calls since 2014, and the sky didn’t fall as a result.

  3. patsbrat says:
    June 25, 2019 at 2:32 pm
    No call was the right call.
    xxxxxxxxxxx
    Who would guess that a Pats fan would agree with the no-call

  4. “the CFL has allowed coaches to challenge pass interference calls/non-calls since 2014, and the sky didn’t fall as a result.”

    The CFL seems to be a more competently led and managed organization than the NFL is. They just don’t have the following the NFL has as a Canadian based league.

    NFL will turn this new rule into another disaster where people who see 1/60th of a second of minor contact in a frame will scream bloody murder as if someone was tackled before the ball got there.

    Just like with the TDs a couple seasons ago. Riverton saw even the tiniest movement on scores that were clearly TDs and took them away.

  5. People talk about sky judge, well both teams have five to eight assistants in a booth with video. They’re the best sky judges we have. So we kind of already have that but no one talks about it in that way.
    ___________

    That’s because they can’t call penalties. The most they can do is tell the head coach to throw the challenge flag, but there are times when you can’t throw the challenge flag. They need a sky judge that is part of the officiating crew.

  6. My concern with the PI review is that it could change the consistency about how things are called. Will refs callit closer rather than let them play? I see this PI review as a huge mistake. Let them play.

  7. It almost always takes 2 hands to catch the ball, especially when trying to catch over the shoulder. If a ball is thrown to me that way, I use both arms. If a DB pulls on one arm BEFORE THE BALL ARRIVES so that arm stays at my side instead of up to make the catch — then yeah, that sure as heck is PI.

    Don’t tell me I wasn’t “significantly hindered.”

  8. itsunclepauley says:
    June 25, 2019 at 6:13 pm
    It almost always takes 2 hands to catch the ball, especially when trying to catch over the shoulder. If a ball is thrown to me that way, I use both arms. If a DB pulls on one arm BEFORE THE BALL ARRIVES so that arm stays at my side instead of up to make the catch — then yeah, that sure as heck is PI.
    Don’t tell me I wasn’t “significantly hindered.”
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Watch the play again – Cooks can and does raise his left arm to the point where his left hand is right in front of his face and right next to the ball. This should be textbook example of “insignificantly hindered.”

  9. Two things:
    1) If it is a penalty, it is a penalty (hearing people, game analysts, former refs, etc. say it wasn’t enough of a penalty to call it IS SO WRONG & a problem w society in general today).

    2) No, the teams’ personnel do not constitute a sky judge & they cannot correct things like an add’l actual video official could.

    Get the friggin calls right. It is about integrity & deserves to be done correctly (human error shouldn’t stick if it is quickly fixable).

  10. This is exactly why the league changed the Catch Rule, isn’t it? Supposedly no one wanted the game ruled by frame-by-frame reviews and instead preferred the ‘100 guys in a bar’ scenario. So why take PI and move it back to replay micro-managing?

    The Patriots example of non-called PI in Super Bowl LIII does the league zero favors — First, it wasn’t blatant PI, and second, the Patriots were used last year for changing the Catch Rules. Beginning to look like this is more anti-Patriots than pro anything helpful.

  11. The first problem we have is our referees. They are part timers. We need full time referees that are dedicated to their job. There is too much at stake in any game to have part time referees controlling the out come of a game.
    As for PI becoming a replay, there are so many reasons to have PI a replay, and there are as many to not. I do not believe that it should be a replay as it has always been a referees call.
    My solution is to have one more Referee in a booth to watch over the entire game.There have been blatant holds that never get called either. His job is not to call penalties unless they are blatant, such as the Saints/Rams game. He would then call for a replay and let the Referees on the field make the call.
    Is this perfect, of course not. The point here is to be sure a blatant no call does not affect the outcome of a game. We can not have that bad of a no call affect a game, playoffs or regular season.
    Again lets get full time Referees on the field that are dedicated and can be called professional Referees. Part time employees are usually not considered professionals.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.