Opinion: Done with Dean Blandino; NFL Officiating Head must go

Mar 26, 2014; Orlando, FL, USA; NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino speaks during a press conference at the NFL Annual Meetings. Mandatory Credit: Rob Foldy-USA TODAY Sports

I am only 31. However, I wonder how it is that players, media and fans all understood what a catch was for decades. Now, determining a catch feels like reading the terms and conditions on the back of a receipt.

If the National Football League seriously believes in accountability for the product that it puts on the field, then Roger Goodell has to replace Head of Officiating Dean Blandino. It is just time for him to go. A committee should not have to be made just to determine what a catch is, and the officiating has gotten progressively worse over the last few seasons.

Late in the season when teams are trying to make the playoffs, the officiating has been questionable, again. In the Washington-Chicago game a couple of weeks ago, Bears kicker Robbie Gould missed a potential game-tying 50-yard field goal in the fourth quarter. One big thing that was lost on the play was the fact that the Redskins lined up with seven men to one side of the field goal formation, which is illegal. In the Philadelphia-Buffalo game, there were inconsistencies as to what was an interception, let alone what is holding.

Dec 13, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears wide receiver Marc Mariani (80) and Washington Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall (23) push each other after a play during the first quarter at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 13, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears wide receiver Marc Mariani (80) and Washington Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall (23) push each other after a play during the first quarter at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

It has gotten to the point where Blandino can talk directly to the officials to make sure items such as ball placement, timing and penalty yardage are correct during the playoffs. Although he is not calling penalties from the New York office, it still does not look well.

“No one is above the game or the rules that govern it. Respect for the game and the people who participate in it will not be compromised.”

Those are the words of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. The commissioner is not above the rules. The person whose job is to uphold the rules of the game is not above it either. Being an official is a tough job. Being the person who has to oversee everything is even tougher. However, it is time for a change. I am sorry, but it is time to move on from Dean Blandino.

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