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With Arms Wide Open
The NFL Referees Association and National Football League are finally back on the same page. An agreement was reached Wednesday night ending the month long lockout. Football fans everywhere are rejoicing!
“We appreciate the commitment of the NFLRA (National Football League Referee’s Association) in working through the issues to reach this important agreement,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said Wednesday night on behalf of both of the committees.
When the season kicked off just a short three weeks ago there was a good amount of skepticism about how accurate and manageable the interim referee’s would be. After week one, there really weren’t too many issues or blown calls. (At least no more than usual)
But opinions changed drastically after this weeks Monday Night Football matchup between the Green Bay Packers and the Seattle Seahawks. It was 4th and long with about four seconds left on the game clocks.
Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson threw up a long “Hail Mary” pass to the corner of the Green Bay end zone. With five defenders in the area, Green Bay safety M.D. Jennings appeared to pick the ball off and dove to the ground. Seahawks wide receiver Golden Tate was partially entangled with Jennings as he had an arm and with him on both the ball and Jennings.
As the play unfolded, one referee waved off the play indicating game over while another referee came over running to the entanglement with his arms raised high indicating a touchdown resulting in a Seahawk victory. The play would go on to be reviewed for a good five minutes before the referees and the replay booth decided that they would not overturn the decision.
If Green Bay misses a playoff berth by one game, or the Seahawks gain a playoff berth by one win, this play call will be brought up, blamed, and will definitely go down as perhaps the biggest blown call in NFL history.
The NFL and all of it’s millions of fans welcome back the NFLRA and hope, no pray that they will never hold out again.
NFL Referee Ed Hochuli will be glad to return to work