The past two weeks the replacement refs have been taking a lot of flack for their performances and a referee admitting he didn’t know the rules is going to be a giant blow to their credibility. Especially when most regular football fans know the rules.
According to the Associated Press, replacement referee Ken Roan said after the game that he awarded 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh with two additional challenges because he didn’t know the rules. Apparently, Harbaugh called his final timeout and then challenged a fumble, and the referee ruled in his favor. But the ref shouldn’t have awarded him a challenge because the 49ers were out of timeouts.
Later in the game on the Vikings next possession, Harbaugh called another timeout (when he was already out of timeouts), and challenged another play. How on earth Harbaugh was awarded another timeout is beyond me, but then to have the replacement referee award Harbaugh with these two challenges after he had already used his two challenges earlier in the game is beyond me.
The negotiations are still far a part because the NFL doesn’t want to give the referees full-time benefits for a part-time job, but at this point, the NFL should just give in. The league is looking worse and worse, and eventually it is going to cost someone in playoff contention dearly. Luckily for the league, the Vikings still won, so the challenges didn’t matter, but this still makes them look horrible.
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