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BJ Kirk Dornan’s late retirement leaves vacancy, 14th this year



Football Zebras has learned from multiple sources that back judge Kurt Dornan has retired. He is now the 14th official to have left the NFL since last February’s Super Bowl. Dornan was listed on the final roster by the NFL back in June, attended the clinics in Dallas in July, and was still scheduled for preseason games in August. Dornan passed the physical at the clinic, but apparently a lingering knee injury forced him into retirement before the first regular season game. He referred us to the league for answers to our questions; the league declined to comment.

Dornan did not work a playoff game last season due to injury, and was assigned to a wild card game the season before. In total, he worked 11 playoff games, three of them being conference championships. Hired by supervisor of officiating Jerry Seeman in 1994, Dornan worked 20 seasons in the NFL.

Dornan was assigned to referee Mike Carey’s crew back in May; when Carey resigned to work for CBS, Dornan was one of two officials from that crew assigned to first-year official Brad Allen, who was promoted to referee. Dornan’s position on Allen’s crew will remain vacant for the duration of the season. A back judge whose crew is on a bye week — or, in certain circumstances, works a Thursday game — will fill in on Allen’s crew each week.

A summary of the officials who have left the NFL field after the conclusion of the 2013 season:

Exp. Departure College Occupation
R 19 Scott Green 23 retired Delaware president, government support services
R 14 Ron Winter 19 retired Michigan State university professor
U 53 Garth DeFelice 16 to supervisor San Diego State distribution center manager, beverage company
U 70 Scott Dawson 19 retired Virginia Tech president/owner, commercial construction company
HL 26 Mark Baltz 25 unspecified Ohio sales consultant
FJ 88 Scott Steenson 23 retired North Texas commercial real estate developer
SJ 16 David Wyant 23 retired Virginia consulting engineer
SJ 87 Keith Parham 3 unspecified Howard advertising operations manager
SJ 128 Larry Rose 17 retired Florida financial planner
BJ 126 Don Carey 19 unspecified California-Riverside contract manager
BJ 2 Billy Smith 20 to replay official East Carolina retired federal government
R 94 Mike Carey 24 resigned Santa Clara owner, skiing accessories
FJ 50 Mike Weir 12 retired Missouri owner, sporting goods store
BJ 6 Kirk Dornan 20 retired Central Washington purchasing manager

Ben Austro is the editor and founder of Football Zebras and the author of So You Think You Know Football?: The Armchair Ref's Guide to the Official Rules (on sale now)