Rein In The Replays

August 16th, 2019

“Did you vote for this Joel?”

The Sage of Tampa Bay Sports

Any list of toughest jobs in America has to include roofing, oil rig worker and Gerald McCoy’s publicist.

NFL cornerback is right behind.

This league is insatiable in its desire for more scoring, so every year the Competition Committee dreams up ways of making things harder for defensive backs.

The results speak for themselves.

Nine years too late?

In 2008, NFL teams combined for 646 touchdowns through the air. Ten years later, that number vaulted to 847. That’s an average of six more TD passes per team in the span of one decade.

You used to be able to make contact with receivers down the field. Not anymore. You used to be able to pile-drive a quarterback into the ground. Not anymore.

Playing cornerback used to be difficult back in the day. Now, it’s almost impossible.

And here comes a new wrinkle designed to test the mettle of Vernon Hargreaves, Carlton Davis, Jamel Dean and Sean Murphy-Bunting: pass interference calls, and non-calls, will be reviewable by instant replay during the 2019 season.

Good luck, gentlemen.

Out Of Hand

“I feel like the NFL officiating department and our coaches have spent a lot of time working on this,” says Falcons President Rich McKay, chairman of the NFL’s Competition Committee. “I feel very confident that we’re getting on the same page and we’re going to be able to successfully implement this change.”

That confidence will be shaken if games are marred by a sea of challenge flags or controversial calls.

Bruce Arians should test the new system, writes Ira Kaufman.

For example, what happens if Mike Evans catches what looks like a game-winning TD pass in the final seconds of the season opener against the 49ers, only to have a standard review reveal an illegal pick that wasn’t called? That pick would be considered offensive pass interference, negating the score and triggering pandemonium at Raymond James Stadium.

There wouldn’t be enough Maalox in the Bay area to soothe Bruce Arians’ upset stomach.

I like scoring, too, but when is the NFL going to acknowledge that things have gotten out of hand? The delicate balance between offense and defense is off-kilter — and getting worse.

In 2008, 10 teams, including the Bucs, registered at least 20 interceptions. Only the Bears and Dolphins hit that mark last season. In 2003, Brett Favre was the only quarterback to throw at least 30 TD passes. Last year, there were nine.

Making pass interference reviewable was an initiative that hadn’t received much traction in NFL circles until the gaffe that undermined New Orleans in the NFC title game against the Rams.

Arians and his peers might as well toss those challenge flags with impunity during the preseason to judge the new rules of the game.

“It’s a work in progress,” says Vikings coach Mike Zimmer. “They went quick with it and passed it at the owners meetings, and they’re finding out there’s some possible unintended consequences coming about.”

The Bucs were flagged nine times for defensive pass interference in 2018, slightly above the league average of 7.78, but that number could increase significantly this fall. Todd Bowles is implementing a far more aggressive scheme, featuring press coverage as opposed to soft coverage, so DPI flags might be flying.

The 3-hour football game could also be an endangered species if replays aren’t streamlined.

“I am disappointed because it’s going to take away from the game,” says new Hall of Fame corner Ty Law. “Referees are out there for a reason. Yes, they don’t make every call right. But something like that, a pass interference, once you start opening that can of worms, it’s going to get ugly, and the game’s going to get a lot longer.”

And a lot messier.

TAMPA TWO is back with another episode with Derrick Brooks and Ira Kaufman, presented by Caldeco Air Conditioning & Heating. Lotta great perspective here. Enjoy this production from The Identity Tampa Bay and

18 Responses to “Rein In The Replays”

  1. AlteredEgo Say: Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:

    I’ve been posting the NFL is opening a HUGE can of controversy…. pass interference can be called or not called on virtually every play away or near the play…. good thing is the Bucs great history with the refs …. the mere mention of Jerry Markbriet still makes my dog hide behind the couch

  2. Alanbucsfan Says:

    I hope the Saints lose several games because of pass interference instant replay- KARMA

  3. Dusthty Rhothdes Says:

    last night was horrible for the flags in that cardianls game with the targeting and offsides same with the skins game

  4. unbelievable Says:

    Look I understand the reasoning, but it’s also so subjective that this is going to be a huge mess. You could argue some kind of pass interference or holding on pretty much every single play. So now it’s going to come down to each ref crew, resulting in even worse discrepancies from game to game, crew to crew. And much longer games.

    I don’t mind them being able to review it when a flag is thrown. Or even review it on a scoring play. But now being able to throw a flag after the fact on any play?

    This will be out of control.

  5. miken Says:

    all the replays is making this once beautiful product NFL almost unwatchable.

  6. Buccfan37 Says:

    In the Steeler game the challenged pass interference call against the Bucs could have gone either way since the Steeler receiver first made hand contact with the defender. So Mike Evans gets opponent hand contact first on many of his receptions and then gets a penalty when he does the same to the defender. This rule change will cause problems league wide.

  7. Todd Says:

    Dear Lord (not Cornelius),

    As you know, I’m no Moses. Can’t control the elements of water. But I am starting to feel a little bit like Noah without the ark. Oh Lord above, if I may, I could care less to see the first team play tonight. Not in this rain Lord. So if you could put in a good word for me when speaking to Coach BA’s heart…would you please nudge him to say, “Fu(k it, we’ve seen enough this week. We’re good.” I just can’t stand the thought of reading in tomorrow morning’s JBF an article about Mike Evans slipping while cutting and blowing out his knee.

    In BA’s Holy Name,


  8. OBP Says:

    Can we please consider not making the Tampa Two videos play automatically when you enter the site? Always scares the crap out of me cause I never expect it.

  9. PUGS&BUCS Says:

    Just get rid of all replays except for scoring plays.

  10. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I coach should be able to challenge any call or non-call……there are limited challenges so it won’t get out of hand.

  11. AlteredEgo Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:

    Tampabaybucfan Says:
    August 16th, 2019 at 3:41 pm
    I coach should be able to challenge any call or non-call……there are limited challenges so it won’t get out of hand.
    I believe the NFL booth officials will be able to call for review

  12. Leighroy Says:

    I don’t mind the challenge expansion, but my question is if you’re going to expand why can’t the NFL also streamline the process itself?

    Ideally a hybrid of the NFL and the NCAA system would be best; Keep the 2 coach’s challenges, but let the booth (or a command center in NYC) review it.

    A zebra squinting at a 11″ Microsoft Surface screen in the sun, rain or snow, or under the hood, or whatever turns 5 minutes of inaction into an eternity. THAT’s the real frustration!

  13. AlteredEgo Say: Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:

    The thing about these types of “rules “ they go out the window in the post season

  14. orlbucfan Says:

    Why are all these white guys shaving their heads?? They look like crap. I can get it with being a cancer patient, but to look like a stud? Please spare me.

  15. rhenry Says:

    I feel ya OBP. It’s annoying has hell.

  16. ancientasbuc Says:

    This will hammer the fact that people who make the call have no business reviewing their own work.

  17. Costa Rica John Says:

    I already don’t like the new rule. Let the refs go back to calling the games. We know they will miss calls from time to time. It’s part of the game.
    Look how long it took the league to figure out what is actually a catch. It’s ridiculous. Now this is only going to add to the uncertainty of the game.

  18. mdsbuc Says:

    OBP Says:
    August 16th, 2019 at 2:52 pm
    “Can we please consider not making the Tampa Two videos play automatically when you enter the site? Always scares the crap out of me cause I never expect it.”

    Agreed. It just makes me think that I don’t want to watch it. Who wants something forced on them?