Whatever Patriots coach Bill Belichick said last week in Arizona, it worked. The NFL will soon be taking a closer look at the use of fixed cameras during games, at the goal line and elsewhere.
Soon as in very soon. Albert Breer of NFL Media reports that the league will commence research and development on Monday regarding Belichick’s proposal to add more cameras.
Breer says that the league specifically is looking for “the right technology and then how to best integrate the cameras into the replay system that will work in all 31 stadiums.”
Cost has been identified as a reason for not installing more cameras, a red herring that caused Belichick to go blue (unless he didn’t). But cost surely isn’t the actual issue, especially since the technology easily can become a revenue stream with the slapping of a logo on the pylon and/or the granting to GoPro of a license to call itself the Official Action Camera of the NFL, or some similar foofy marketing concoction.
The more practical challenge from the placement of cameras in pylons comes from the presence of 22 players and seven officials on the field, who can obscure what otherwise would be a clear view of action on the field. It also will become important for the officials to not place ever further reliance on the availability of visual evidence when making calls in real time, erring one way or the other with the assumption that any errors can be rectified by replay.