(Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)
There is going to be a need for some new blood among NFL referees for the 2023 season.
That is because four longtime referees have announced their retirement.
NFL announced the retirement of four officials, including Jerome Boger. pic.twitter.com/uEt7YzwwT7
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 2, 2023
NFL referees aren’t quite as personally well known as their NBA counterparts, as many basketball fans know plenty of established officials by name.
Officials in football are a little more nameless and anonymous, but hard-core fans still recognize a few of them, not to mention their tendencies.
The officiating in the NFL has come under increased fire in recent years, but more so this season after a number of bad calls.
One thing that happened on a recurring basis in 2022 and drew the ire of many fans was ill-advised roughing-the-passer calls that occurred on what seemed like normal, clean hits on quarterbacks.
Then there was the AFC Championship Game, which was a rematch of last season’s title game between the Kansas City Chiefs and Cincinnati Bengals.
In January 2021, the Bengals got past the Chiefs on a game-winning field goal in overtime after Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes threw an interception.
But this time, Mahomes got his revenge despite playing on a sprained ankle, as he scrambled out of bounds to get Kansas City a first down with 17 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
But the Bengals’ Joseph Ossai was assessed for an unnecessary roughness call which cost them 15 yards.
Of course, in the Super Bowl, the Philadelphia Eagles James Bradberry was called for a ticky-tack holding penalty late in the fourth quarter which got the Chiefs closer to the goal line, setting up a short 27-yard field goal for Harrison Butker that won them the world championship.
Fans are hoping that the referees that replace the ones retiring today will be less biased and more objective.
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