Football officials free to leave the field when the game is over

The end of this week's Monday Night Football game featured some angry moments as both teams came together to shake hands at the end of a hard-fought game. https://streamable.com/6a966d While plenty of media reported the incident, you'll notice the officials were nowhere to be found. That's because the officials' responsibility ends the moment

When the bean bag does more than mark change of possession

Down judge Dana McKenzie made good use of his bean bag in the Week 1 Monday Night Football game. Fans normally see officials drop the bean bag to indicate a fumble, interception or another change of possession. McKenzie used the bag for a more rare purpose (at least at the NFL level). A

Let them talk! We need detailed referee announcements

Over the years, we've chronicled the evolution of the referee microphone, from it's humble beginnings to it being used as a valuable teaching and explaining tool. While some people might have snickered or rolled their eyes at long-winded announcements, they could not deny they knew what happened and why the officials

For NFL officials, thankfully it is not 2020 anymore

When I wrote a recap of the 2020 season, I closed my column by saying "may we never again have another like it." This season, covid-19 is still with us, but for the officials, it will not be a repeat of 2020. Vaccines The NFL reported that 99% of its employees have been

The NFL umpire is more stationary this season

This year, Walt Anderson, senior vice president of officiating training and development, trained the officials to get in position and be stationary at the apex of a play. The philosophy is that a stationary official's eyes will be still and he'll be able to zero in and focus on the

Players now helping officials during hurry-up offense

The final, thrilling, frantic seconds of a football game is always stressful. For the officials, the pressure builds. One of their prime responsibilities is to get the ball ready for play and not cause an unfair delay to the offense. Over the years, the officials have developed ball relays down to