Among the proposed rules changes that NFL team owners will be considering this week are a pair that deal with the addition of an eighth official who would have access to video and be able to communicate with the officials on the field in order to catch any obvious missed calls.
The Competition Committee has endorsed further analysis of the proposal and there’s been a lot of talk about a preseason trial of what’s often referred to as a sky judge. One reason why things seem unlikely to go further this year was laid out by NFL vice president of football operations Troy Vincent in an interview with Peter King for Football Morning in America.
“The concept of the eighth man in the booth has some merit,” Vincent said. “But we just don’t have the pipeline [of officials] today. Can we get there? Yes. But today, it could be a challenge.”
Another reason came when Vincent explained why the one-year experiment with pass interference replay review wasn’t extended. Vincent said the league failed because they rushed to implement the rule and you “can’t rush and just shove something in there without knowing all the consequences.”
The desire to have a mechanism in place to ensure that no egregious calls are missed has remained through that failure, but it may be some time before it is fully implemented.