Sunday, September 10, 2006

NFL Referees 2006-07

This posting is to discuss the performance of referees in the NFL during the 2006-2007 season.

The NFL is now issuing its game recaps and statistics without listing the name of the referee crew. This will make it much harder to track statistics about how each referee calls the games that it covers. This type of tracking is nothing unusual -- in fact, the BBC web site offers a statistical track of how many red cards and yellow cards referees in the Premier League (soccer) each referee issues in the games he covers.

Week one: Pittsburgh Steelers 28, Miami Dolphins 17. Referee Walt Coleman did not see Dolphins coach Nick Saban throw the flag for a replay review, after his crew made a mistake at the goal-line and called Steeler Health Miller as scoring a TD rather than being dragged out at the one-yard line. Nick Saban later said it was his own fault for not making his challenge more obvious.

Indianapolis Colts 26, New York Giants 21: side-judge Rick Patterson called offensive pass interference on New York Giants wide receiver Tim Carter to negate a 19-yard catch with 4 minute left in the 4th quarter but replays showed minimal contact. With 17 seconds left, the ref called an illegal snap with the New York Giants at midfield trying to spike the ball, but center Shaun O'Hara explained later that the defense was illegally calling out a false snap count and that the Giants pointed this out on previous plays to the refs, who ignored it.


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