This last off-season, the NFL refined their definition of what constitutes a reception, in an attempt to clarify a rule that was becoming confusing.

They have not done well.

So far, the referees seemed as confused as the rest of us.  More so, really.  Look at these two calls from last Sunday’s Falcons vs Redskins game.

This has been a terrible few weeks for the NFL and their officials,

First, there was the illegal bat of the football by Seattle that went undetected and helped the Seahawks beat the Lions in a Monday Night Football game that went down the the final minutes.

The following Monday night when the Steelers defeated San Diego 24-20, not one of the refs noticed that 18 seconds ran off the clock when they shouldn’t have in a game that guess what, went down to the final crucial seconds.

In fact in the last 2 weeks, NFL referees are 2 for 2 on Monday Night Football. Two games, and two officials reprimanded.  

So what’s going on here? Maybe the pressure is getting to some of these zebras.  They’re only human, and will make mistakes.  Instant replay can cover some blunders, but clearly not all of them.

The only real solution is for everybody to realize that no matter what, mistakes will happen because it’s live football. But who thinks that would ever happen?

These guys, and now gals, are not full time employees. For a league with as many rules as the NFL, that has to be a factor as well.

But when the league tries to clarify but confuses, that may be the biggest problem of all and even worse, the root of the entire situation.


Luke Straub

on twitter@abso_luke_ly

Spark Sports NFL Analyst