What is the new pass interference replay rule?
Coaches will be able to throw their challenge flag and initiate a review when they feel officials have missed a clear pass interference penalty on the field or called a pass interference penalty on a clean play. Like any other challenge, they’ll be permitted two per game, though winning each would grant a third. A review that’s not overturned will cost the challenging team a timeout, and teams cannot force a challenge if they have no timeouts left in the half.
All reviews will be initiated from the replay booth in the final two minutes of either half.
Look, there are two things to note of sincere, significant importance here.
One, the league/owners/coaches/whomever crossed a big line here in adding judgment calls and no-calls to the list of reviewable outcomes. That’s huge. And two, this would absolutely remedy what happened late in the NFC Championship when Los Angeles Rams CB Nickell Robey-Coleman interfered with New Orleans Saints WR Tommylee Lewis and it went uncalled. That’s not huge. That’s actually pretty not huge.
Because it doesn’t address the wide array of possibilities that would create a similar outrage based on the same technicalities that existed two months ago.
The bottom line is that this was the officiating crew’s fault and the NFL’s fault. They could have implemented any of a dozen different efforts to prevent that play from not drawing a flag. They didn’t take any of them.
Given the media furor following the game, the NFL’s willingness to admit to the Saints that the call was indeed incorrect and the recent statement from Saints Owner Gayle Benson, I’m confident the NFL is going to prevent a blatant pass interference call near the end of regulation going unflagged. But what are they going to do to prevent a blatant face mask on a quarterback near the end of regulation going unflagged? What if it’s not near the end of regulation?
Why do we have to wait for the next dramatic misfire from within the system of officiating in the NFL to essentially sour our experience as fans?
It was always going to be this stupid and this myopic. This is how the NFL operates.
The state of officiating this sport for this league is a body with a hundred cuts and they put a band-aid on one of them.
Good job. Good effort.