Written by: Mike Epstein (@MikeENJ)
1. The NFL needs new officiating
This is getting bad. Like really really bad. The officiating by the replacement referees has gotten progressively worse throughout the start of this season. Their blunders have been characterized by missed calls, unnecessary penalties, and just all around incompetence. The officiating took a plunge for the horrendous last night, however, when a blown call dictated the outcome of a game. The error occurred in last night’s Monday Night Football game between the Seahawks and Packers, on national television nonetheless. With seconds left, and the Seahawks trailing 12-7, Seattle Quarterback Russell Wilson launched a pass into the end zone that eventually landed in a sea of players. Seattle Wide Receiver Golden Tate and Green Bay’s Defensive Back M.D. Jennings both got their hands on the ball and came down on it together. Jennings appeared to have possession as he had both hands wrapped around the ball, however Tate had the ball cradled in his left arm. Two referees were standing near the spot the catch occurred and while one indicated it was a touchdown, the other referee asserted it was an interception. The ruling on the field was a touchdown and Green Bay lost the game in a call decided by the officials.
2. The NFL needs new officiating
This needs to be said again because of how bad it’s getting. Now, the referees are not to blame. Their skill level is only so high and the speed of the National Football League is much faster and more advanced than they are capable of working in. Despite this, they shouldn’t be here in the first place. This league is for professionals and this does not only apply to the players. Everyone involved needs to be the best at what they do, including the referees.
The blown call caused quite a reaction on Twitter last night as many athletes voiced their displeasure:
“Got (robbed) by the refs.. Embarrassing. Thanks nfl” – TJ Lang
“Drama. Great for business. Godspeed, Ed Hochuli.” – Arian Foster
“I simply just LOVE the NFL to much to see these mistakes. I’m sick like I just played for the Packers” – LeBron James
“Not gonna watch another nfl game until real refs r back. What a farce” – Dirk Nowitzki
“These refs gotta go I’m sorry” – Reggie Bush
3. Matt Schaub may have a steel plate inside of his skull
Houston Texans’ QB Matt Schaub took what is certainly the most vicious hit of the season thus far on Sunday against the Denver Broncos. Schaub was sacked by Broncos linebacker Joe Mays in a helmet to helmet hit that snapped the quarterback’s head back and caused his helmet to fly off. The QB lied on the ground for a couple moments, grabbing his head and writhing in pain. He was eventually helped off his feet and walked off under his own power. In case you missed the hit, click the link below to catch it.
4. The Jets are royally screwed
Jets All Pro Cornerback Darrelle Revis left Sunday’s game against the Dolphins with a leg injury that many thought was a torn ACL. Medical reports on Monday confirmed the fear and it looks like Revis has a torn ACL and will miss the rest of the season. On top of that, the Jets still think they have Chad Pennington taking snaps and look confused on offense (ie Tim Tebow getting hit in the helmet with a pass from Sanchez).
5. The Saints need some help
After their loss to the Chiefs on Sunday, the Saints fell to 0-3. Their running game has been stagnant, notching less than 100 yards rushing on the day between three running backs. To make matters worse, they go into Lambeau next week to play the Packers.
6. The Cardinals are 3-0?
The Cardinals have started out 3-0 for the first time in 38 years. On top of that, they’re being led by Kevin Kolb. Yes, you read correctly, Kevin Kolb, who is having a stellar season thus far. In three games, Kolb has thrown for 428 yards, 4 TDs, and 0 interceptions.
7. Bill Belichick may have wanted to knuckle up with the referee at the end of the Patriots game
In another game that was marred by officiating, the Ravens beat the Patriots 31-30 on Sunday night. Officiating was questionable the entire game and the finale didn’t disappoint. Ravens kicker Justin Turner kicked a game winning field goal that appeared to go over the goal post. Any kick that goes over the goal post and not inside the margin isn’t supposed to count. The referees declared the kick good and as a result the Ravens won. As the game ended and both teams walked off the field, a screaming Belicheck went to grab a referee’s arm to get his attention. This will surely provoke some type of reprimand from the league office.
8. The Giants look really really good this year
If not for a defensive error on a third down in game 1, the Giants would be 3-0. Big Blue crushed the Panthers this past week 36-7. Manning threw for 288 yards and a TD while running back Andre Brown rushed for 113 yards and two scores.
9. Peyton Manning must really miss playing for the Colts
After having such a stellar career playing for the Colts, Manning took his talents to Denver this year in a fresh start. Things haven’t exactly progressed as quickly as he’d like though. The Broncos are 1-2, yet Manning has thrown for 824 yards in three games. While the Broncos surely are not as potent as Manning’s Indy team once was, it’s too early in the season to write this team off, especially with Peyton at the helm.
10. CJ Spiller is a gift from the fantasy football gods
In one of the most surprising stories of the year, Spiller has played like one of the premier backs in the league and has been a huge addition for any fantasy football team (like mine). Up until leaving the game with a shoulder injury on Sunday, Spiller had ran for 308 yards and 3 TD’s in three games this season. It looks like Spiller will most likely return in Week 5 although it is possible for a return next week in the Bills’ game against AFC East rival New England.