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NFL Cracking Down on Abuse of Officials

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NFL: Abuse of refs will lead to significant discipline

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Troy Vincent, NFL executive vice president of football operations, issued a memo to all 32 NFL teams Monday warning that anyone engaging in "offensive contact or conduct" toward game officials will be subject to "significant discipline."

 

The memo, which was obtained by NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport, comes after a few high-profile incidents involving players this season that have resulted in league discipline.

 

 

Here is Vincent's memo in full:

 

This is the time of year when emotions run high as the push for the postseason is in full swing. Let us remember to uphold the highest standards of professionalism and sportsmanship, especially when it comes to taking care of one another, respecting the officials, the fans, and our great game.

 

We want to keep our players on the field. No one wants a penalty or an ejection to determine the outcome of a game. In recent weeks, however, there have been several suspensions and ejections because of contact with, and conduct toward, our game officials.

 

Examples include players getting in the faces of officials to dispute calls, penalty flags thrown into the crowd, and officials being verbally disparaged as they leave the stadium. One official even sustained a significant injury during a fight between players on the field.

 

This is not who we are -- as players, as clubs, as the NFL. Going forward, any offensive contact or conduct -- physical or otherwise -- with an official will result in significant discipline.

The NFL's policy prohibiting offenses against officials applies to all game day locations, including the playing field, bench area, tunnels, parking lots, and other stadium passageways. We will continue to emphasize enforcement of unsportsmanlike conduct rules with our officiating crews, and they will be encouraged to disqualify players for any offenses directed at them. Such offenses may also result in fines, and/or suspensions.

 

Please review this memo with your players and members of your coaching staff prior to your next game.

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10 minutes ago, 26CornerBlitz said:

 

Examples include players getting in the faces of officials to dispute calls,

 

Unless you're Mr. Bundchen.

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43 minutes ago, 26CornerBlitz said:

I'd bet anything that McDermott specifically brought the league memo to Jerry Hughes' attention. 

If he didn't, he sure as hell should.

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There is a general loss of sportsmanship and decorum. This takes many forms, simple like trash talking and more aggressive actions like physical invasion of space or outright contact. 

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With the $$$ the NFL generates and the stature of the sport in American culture, it is inexcusable for the old school system of officiating to continue in the NFL, using amateur old men lawyers and what not to do the job.

 

Should be a professional career like MLB has, with the guys cutting their teeth in smaller college divisions, then big time NCAA football maybe, then feed that into the NFL with guys who know what the hell they are doing.

 

This is nothing new; the sport needed to shift to that type of system probably 25 years ago.

 

:lol:

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6 minutes ago, Fadingpain said:

With the $$$ the NFL generates and the stature of the sport in American culture, it is inexcusable for the old school system of officiating to continue in the NFL, using amateur old men lawyers and what not to do the job.

 

Should be a professional career like MLB has, with the guys cutting their teeth in smaller college divisions, then big time NCAA football maybe, then feed that into the NFL with guys who know what the hell they are doing.

 

This is nothing new; the sport needed to shift to that type of system probably 25 years ago.

 

:lol:

Yeah, the referee organization seems like a good ol' boys' club right now. There are a number of father-son pairs in there. Guys get in just based on connections and loyalties. No one wants to mess with that.

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12 minutes ago, KelsaysLunchbox said:

Maybe if they didn't continuously make horrible calls no one would want to abuse them.

 

The officials have been making terrible calls for years. It still doesn't justify players disputing calls the way they have recently.

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13 minutes ago, BillsVet said:

 

The officials have been making terrible calls for years. It still doesn't justify players disputing calls the way they have recently.

That's your opinion. But as you state...it's been going on for years. Frustration builds. Players also know that in a conflict with officials the league automatically sides with officials. Even when they are blatantly wrong. Again frustration.

29 minutes ago, LeGOATski said:

Did they send a memo to the officials about calling a consistent game?

And that's the real point. Consistent. In the MLB it's well known how certain umpires call balls and strikes. If they are consistent there isn't an issue. Same should apply to NFL refs. An officiating crew classifies a holding call in a certain way better call it on both sides and not just when situation benefits.

 

I however do give credit to the officials from the snow bowl last weekend. That 2 point conversion flag was one that had they not called would have ended the game sooner...this getting themselves into a warm room quicker. So credit them for making an important call in harsh climate.

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6 minutes ago, KelsaysLunchbox said:

That's your opinion. But as you state...it's been going on for years. Frustration builds. Players also know that in a conflict with officials the league automatically sides with officials. Even when they are blatantly wrong. Again frustration.

And that's the real point. Consistent. In the MLB it's well known how certain umpires call balls and strikes. If they are consistent there isn't an issue. Same should apply to NFL refs. An officiating crew classifies a holding call in a certain way better call it on both sides and not just when situation benefits.

 

I however do give credit to the officials from the snow bowl last weekend. That 2 point conversion flag was one that had they not called would have ended the game sooner...this getting themselves into a warm room quicker. So credit them for making an important call in harsh climate.

That was a good call and one that we don't usually see made after-the-fact. Was it called after the review? I was surprised.

 

Consistency is definitely the key.

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3 hours ago, KelsaysLunchbox said:

That's your opinion. But as you state...it's been going on for years. Frustration builds. Players also know that in a conflict with officials the league automatically sides with officials. Even when they are blatantly wrong. Again frustration.

And that's the real point. Consistent. In the MLB it's well known how certain umpires call balls and strikes. If they are consistent there isn't an issue. Same should apply to NFL refs. An officiating crew classifies a holding call in a certain way better call it on both sides and not just when situation benefits.

 

Your arguement holds no water.

 

If it did, does that allow fans that are frustrated with players performing poorly to throw stuff at them?

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5 minutes ago, Binghamton Beast said:

 

Your arguement holds no water.

 

If it did, does that allow fans that are frustrated with players performing poorly to throw stuff at them?

And...now your argument holds no water.

 

Huge difference between yelling at someone and actually throwing something at them. But yea, fans are more then welcome to yell at the players. Been happening for decades. 

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4 hours ago, Fadingpain said:

With the $$$ the NFL generates and the stature of the sport in American culture, it is inexcusable for the old school system of officiating to continue in the NFL, using amateur old men lawyers and what not to do the job.

 

Should be a professional career like MLB has, with the guys cutting their teeth in smaller college divisions, then big time NCAA football maybe, then feed that into the NFL with guys who know what the hell they are doing.

 

This is nothing new; the sport needed to shift to that type of system probably 25 years ago.

 

:lol:

Couldn't agree more. These refs need to be substantially younger. They need to be full time. And they need to train at the D1 level. I cringe every week waiting to hear what awful crew we'll get this week. Sunday we get to pick a Booger....

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So the refs are now protected by the "snowflake" rule where someone complaining to them hurts their feelings and they can flag them for it.  Great.  If that's the case Brady should have about 15 flags a game.

1 minute ago, LABILLBACKER said:

Couldn't agree more. These refs need to be substantially younger. They need to be full time. And they need to train at the D1 level. I cringe every week waiting to hear what awful crew we'll get this week. Sunday we get to pick a Booger....

They did hire 20+ full timers.  I'm kinda curious what their rap sheet looks like this season.

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1 hour ago, KelsaysLunchbox said:

And...now your argument holds no water.

 

Huge difference between yelling at someone and actually throwing something at them. But yea, fans are more then welcome to yell at the players. Been happening for decades. 

 

If you read the OP you will see offensive contact mentioned. Offensive contact, physical or otherwise is in the memo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, mead107 said:

Can we  as fans file a lawsuit for bad calls? 

 

You can find a laywer who will file for anything as long as you pay him/her enough and not pay in meadcoins.

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