There’s nothing to see here. Keep moving. No cause for concern.
That’s what the National Football League essentially is saying as it tries to hold together, with duct tape and dried-up glue, a collection of third-tier-and-worse replacement officials who have struggled at times through two weeks of preseason games.
And it’s much more than bad calls in the heat of the moment. It’s a troubling inability to know what to do, quickly and correctly, after the whistle blows.
NFL V.P. of operations Ray Anderson tells Jarrett Bell of USA Today that the mistakes are being magnified because they are being committed by the folks replacing the locked-out officials.
“Unfortunately, those [errors] have happened with our regular officials,” Anderson said, specifically in reference to a particularly egregious error from Saturday night’s Cowboys-Chargers game (more on that later). “We need better communication between the officials on the field, the NFL observer in the booth and the replay official, to avoid that.”