Dec 4, 2011; Tampa FL, USA; NFL officials, including referee Gene Steratore (114), head linesman Wayne Mackie (106), back judge Dino Paganelli (105) and side judge Mike Weatherford (116) confer between the first and second quarters of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers game against the Carolina Panthers at Raymond James Stadium. The Panthers won 38-19. Mandatory Credit: Phil Sears-US PRESSWIRE

Will Officiating Get Better Or Worse?

If you are not aware the NFL is in a labor dispute with the union that represents the leagues officials.  You know, the off-duty doctors, lawyers, and such.  Apparently the talks have hit the wall so hard that later this month, the league will begin hiring replacement officials.  Do I hear a “Replacements” sequel?

For some fans, this won’t come as an issue because they already feel that the NFL officials suck bad enough already so the thought of Arena League and small division college officials won’t truly hurt the NFL from that standpoint.  Other will argue that either A: they simply could care less, or B: things are really going to get worse relying on inferior officiating.

The NFL for all it’s popularity has fallen short in my opinion in regards to it’s officiating crews.  For one, why do they bother to mix and match the crews?  Would it not be better to have the same crews work together every game?  Seems like they would at least have continuity and the officials will find it easier to do their jobs with a crew they are familiar with.

Of course the best thing that NFL could do would be to stop hiring part time professionals and hire permanent officials full time.  Like Major League Baseball.  With no off-season to speak of it’s very easy to find a way to incorporate officiating into the off-season programs.  Each team could be assigned a crew for OTA’s and mini-camps, while the rest of the off-season could be spent working on the rule book to better understand the processes.

Instead, the NFL wants to have a labor dispute with a doctors and lawyers who only part-time officiate.  Someone tell me why they have a union to begin with?

In any case, on this slow news day, officiating may have some new faces very soon and if you think that the current distressed officials can’t hold out, consider this is only their “hobby” jobs.

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Tags: NFL NFL Officials

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