Oh boy. Where do we begin.
What was more or less a ho-hum story heading into the season has turned into an all-out mutiny in just three short weeks. Players and fans alike are fed up with what feels like a never-ending string of bad calls, missed calls, and overall poor game management.
From the ref that officiated a New Orleans game being outed as a Saints fan on Facebook, to another replacement that asked Eagles running back LeSean McCoy to help out his fantasy team, the scab saga has not fallen short on comical anecdotes. (To top things off , the Lingerie Football League announced this week that it fired some current NFL replacement ref crews due to “incompetence.”)
All jokes aside (and there have been many), it’s the game-swinging calls on the field that have drawn the most ire from legions of NFL fans. Not to say officiating was perfect prior to this season, but everything from catch reviews to rough hits to clock/timeout management has been under a meddling microscope through the first three weeks. When paramount issues like player safety and game outcomes are at stake, people start calling for the head of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, who has yet to address the current fiasco, which he apparently refuses to see as such.
Clearly, the real refs could not come back any sooner, and when you consider that the two sides (referees and owners) are only $60,000 apart per team in reaching a resolution, it doesn’t sound like a lot is holding back a multi-billion dollar business from pushing through the doldrums of the early 2012 season. So far though, there is no change on the immediate horizon. (i.e., Week 4)
Until Goodell and Co. get everything sorted out, there could very well be more on-field atrocities to clog up social media networks in upcoming weeks. Here are our 10 worst officiating offenses so far…