One of the most important parts of the National Football League isn’t when a down is played, or there’s no scores or when the draft has come. Although it’s true free agency is important because you can sign players to bolster or revamp a roster, the NFL Rules Committee votes on proposed changes to the game that can impact what goes on for seasons to come.
One such proposition was voted almost unanimously 31-1 Yes on having a replay for pass interference at any stage in a football game. The proposed rule allows coaches to ask if the penalty, regardless of if it’s called or not can be reviewed.
The rule can have one of two probable outcomes: The rule could be used fairly and given a chance within the one year span of use to cement how having the rule is good for the game, or the rule could be abused in some ways to show favoritism to certain teams or players. It’s why current San Fransisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman and newly signed Los Angeles Rams safety Eric Weddle have voiced their opinions and warn that not only could the game become one-sided, but game times could drastically spike up if called often and the outcomes can now be controlled directly by the officials and not the players in critical moments.
Richard Sherman tweeted to Eric Weddle on March 26th, “Now they (the officials) can control the outcome as they see fit. Every defendable pass looks like PI (pass interference) in slow motion.”
It is important to note that the missed defensive pass interference call between the Los Angeles Rams and the New Orleans Saints led to this rule change. However, unlike Nickell Robey-Coleman’s interview where he admitted, “Ah, hell yeah, that was pass interference.”, there will be very close calls and probably few of the players targeted will say or feel that they did anything wrong. That is why the fans who are either loyal to the game and certain teams or to just casual fans who watch one game a year must educate themselves on the rule terminologies for pass interference and let their voices be heard. We should all want fair and clean officiated games.