National Football Schadenfreude

The Rams lost. Goodell had to give yet another trophy to the Patriots. Ratings were down.

As a Saints fan I couldn’t be happier with the outcome of the game we were presented with. I don’t care to hear Rams fans excuse the refereeing, I don’t care to hear Vikings fans who are still upset about a game ten years ago excuse the refs or think they got some sort of revenge out of this. Stuff happens; I get it. But bad stuff happened to the Rams (and I enjoyed seeing that guy get burned on a pretty big first down in some of the little portion of the game I watched), bad stuff happened to the league, and I can’t imagine that former Jets intern Goodell has enjoyed ever handing off that trophy to the Patriots.

My problem with the sport has grown year after year, though, and it’s not just Saints games. First and foremost: God they take forever. The commercials. The breaks. The stoppages. In a world with streaming and DVDs, commercial breaks are becoming more offensive to sit through. I DVR’d this game and watched the football action in chunks before doing other things then catching up.

Second, the officiating. It isn’t a problem that the officiating isn’t perfect: nothing designed by man ever will be. The problem is that it is at best inconsistent. At least the WWE is clearly and admittedly scripted. The officiating in the NFL is literally the worst outside of soccer. Maybe it’s games people call football. Maybe they’re cursed.

For example: I don’t know what P.I. is anymore. I don’t know what a catch is anymore. I don’t know what holding is because what I see called as holding happens every play. Do you know what that last thing means? It means referees literally can choose when to call holding and influence the game. Because it happens every game, every play, but is not called every game, every play. I also don’t know when you’re allowed to hit the quarterback and where.

Because it’s all inconsistent.

Third, the amount of time spent on replays is ridiculous especially when people say adding more plays that can be challenged would lengthen the game. There needs to be an off-field official with decent vision and a high definition display who can decide whether a call is overturned inside of thirty seconds. An example would be the muffed punt during the KC-NE AFC Championship. That took forever to decide in real time and should have been handled based on two angles of the replay.

The on field official shouldn’t be tasked with deciding whether or not he was wrong, in addition to everything else.

I’ve seen a lot of defending of referee “judgment calls.” That’s just a stupid thing to defend. An imperfect old man making decisions based on what he thought he saw in real time should determine a multi-million dollar event’s outcome? Go fuck yourself. The athletes on the field should be the determining factor. The decision of the coaches. Not some old dude who might be on the take.

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