Because the NFL’s regular referees are engaged in a labor dispute with the league, football has been using replacement officials, hailing from such powerhouse leagues as the NCAA’s Division III and the Lingerie Football League.
2. First, a simple one: this ref signaled a false start while facing the wrong way. I know he might not be used to officiating televised games, but still.
3. In the New York Giants’ game against Chicago, Charles Tillman committed defensive pass interference at the end of the first quarter.
4. And, as usually happens when there’s 0:00 seconds on the clock, the quarter ended.
5. CBS went to commercial. All was swell.
6. Until it wasn’t. The refs decided that, because Tillman’s defensive penalty ended the first quarter, there would be another play. This is not the correct call.
You can’t end a game or a half on a defensive penalty, because otherwise, teams could commit infractions with no fear of any punishment. But that’s not the case at the end of a quarter, when play continues as is after a short break.
7. The announcers were as confused as everyone else, including a visibly befuddled Tom Coughlin.
8. Meanwhile, Jay Cutler roamed the field, asking people if they wanted to shotgun beers in the locker room.
9. During the Vikings-Chargers game, they called this runner tackled before he fumbled. But it’s incredibly clear that the ball (see the red circle) came out while he was standing upright.
10. Well into the third quarter of Chicago-Miami, they decided it was a good time to start using two balls.
11. It’s a pity that Miami didn’t play with both. “Should we run here? Pass? WHY CHOOSE JUST ONE.”
12. As terrible as the refs are, this guy has a pretty baller underhand toss.
13. Giants-Jags, officials called offensive holding on New York’s Jayron Hosley.
14. Too bad Hosley, #36, was returning the punt. The ballcarrier cannot commit holding. Just can’t.
15. The last and worst incident happened to the Buffalo Bills. Punting at the end of the 1st quarter, Buffalo downed the ball at the four-yard line. Well done, etc.
If you look at the bottom-right of the screen, you can see the ref, who is in the perfect place to make the call, toss the little beanbag that indicates the punt being downed.
16. Just to make sure we’re clear here: this was downed at the four. No question. Easiest call in the world.
17. AND THEN THE REFS DECIDED IT WAS A TOUCHBACK (meaning the Redskins would get the ball at the 20 yard line). Touchbacks happen when the ball is downed in the end zone. This ball did not enter the end zone.
There just isn’t an explanation for this. It’s madness. One of the refs was RIGHT THERE.
18. Bills punter Brian Moorman was pissed. And you don’t want Brian Moorman to be pissed at you.
As of right now, these officials will be starting the regular season. Please come back to us, Ed Hochuli.