Former NFL Referee And Current FOX Analyst Makes Telling Comment About The State Of NFL Refereeing

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The NFL has a refereeing problem.

Or, at least, NFL fans think the NFL has a refereeing problem.

But if you ask the league, specifically NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, he’ll tell you that the state of refereeing in the league has never been better.

“For us, when you look at officiating, I don’t think it’s ever been better in the league,” Goodell said recently.

The reality is that he’s probably right. NFL referees have more tools and training than they ever had before. But the speed of the game is faster than its ever been and fans have more tools than ever before to assess calls.

Green Bay Packers quarterback (for now) Aaron Rodgers went on the Pat McAfee Show on Wednesday and said that the league is losing quality referees because they don’t pay enough.

“Listen, the best refs we’ve had in the league are on TV now,” Rodgers said. “They’re not working in the league office. They’re on TV. Gene Steratore, my favorite ref of all-time. I think one of the best guys at understanding how to interact with guys and how to communicate with them, and then how to control a game without being a part of it. Gene was incredible at that, but Gene is on TV now. Why? Because they pay more.

As it turns out, he’s not alone in that thought process. Former NFL ref turned analyst for FOX Sports Mike Pereira says Rodgers is onto something.

“I liked his logic, but it didn’t apply to me because I was already off the field and in the league office,” Pereira said. “He has a point. I do feel that officiating is under-appreciated from the standpoint of the league. I think the job I had [as head of officiating] is the second-most important job in the league. I give Roger Goodell the No. 1 job, but I think what happens in officiating and the integrity of the game, I think that position is so important that if you get the right one you should do everything to not let them get away.” – via The New York Post

The NFL has recently discussed the potential of making all of its referees full-time. Maybe it’s time they act on those discussions.