Sunday, October 20, 2019

NFL: Are the Referees Deciding the Game

It is Sunday. That means that I get my weekly dose of the NFL. I am not sure whether the product being offered by the NFL is football anymore.

I am beginning to think that NFL stands for No Football League. 

Last week during one game, there were no less than six plays in a row on which flags were thrown. It was towards the end of the game and the flags thrown definitely affected the outcome.

How bad is it? Flags have been thrown on 10.25 percent of the 16,526 plays run in the NFL this season. That is an increase of 28.9 percent over 2009 when there were flags thrown on 7.95 percent of the 46,523 plays run by teams in the league. 

Now it is important that I am using the Flags Thrown statistic--which means a penalty was enforced, declined, or offsetting. I'm not sure if they track when the flag is picked up with no penalty. I ran across a pretty nifty website called NFL Penalties which has the stats back to 2009. 

So doing the math--that is about a 29 percent increase in penalties over a 10 year period.

And the worst part is that even with video review--they still get the calls wrong! But, that is a rant for another time. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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