The NFL sent out a memo to all coaches last week warning them about bullying the replacement officials. In fact, head coach of the San Francisco 49ers Jim Harbaugh was fined by the league for comments he made about the officials during the preseason.
With that, expect John Fox to be fined by the league sometime this week. Fox held his tongue after the Monday Night game against the Atalanta Falcons, but he spent more time out on the field than Knowshon Moreno who fumbled late in the first quarter and carried the ball just three times.
Fox was livid as he tried to explain the rules to the officiating crew which was mostly comprised of D-II and D-III referees.
After Moreno fumbled the ball, a Broncos’ player emerged form the pile with it and tempers flared as the refs gave the ball to the Falcons. Pushing and shoving followed and delayed the game by six minutes. Getting the correct penalty yardage was an issue as well.
The lack of control in an already chaotic sport doesn’t bode well for a league that prides itself on it being all about the game.
Fox will likely be fined $10,000 or more, and other coaches will be fined in the coming weeks I’m sure. Why don’t we pool some of that fine money and pay the regular officials what they’re asking for?
The NFL needs to reassess their priorities.