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Saturday, October 13, 2012 6:01:43 PM(UTC)
At what point is the ball in the air and how are they going to decipher when the ball is in the air and WR/CB need to stop battling? Stare at the QB until the ball is thrown and if you see contact between them, FLAG? What about that referee's other responsibilities? How is he going to get a clear view of the QB and all WR/CB?
Kevin, again, my point is that I have added no judgment call that the referee doesn't already have to make. "Ball in the air" is ALREADY a requirement for pass interference downfield. Anything else has to be illegal contact/holding.
Sure its hard to figure out when the ball is in the air. BUT THAT IS ALREADY PART OF THE OFFICIAL'S RESPONSIBILITY. It is not a change!
So while my rule does keep one of the current rule's "judgment" moment, it gets rid of at least 2 really big places of judgment under the current mess of rules:
1. "When is there sufficient
contact beyond five yards to warrant a penalty?" Gone under the Wade proposal.
2. "When is contact incidental
?" Gone under the Wade proposal.
Of course, the ref can still miss the first push (just like now). But he doesn't have to distinguish between a "little" and a "lot". There are no adjectives involved at all once a piece of contact is seen. As soon as sees a piece of contact after the pass in air, his job re: interference is done. He can now put all his effort into all those other responsibilities you worry about.
By no means is the Wade proposal perfect. (Nor does it have a chance in hell with the lawyers in charge.)
But it does allow the zebras less flexibility to screw things up with their "judgment" calls.
And, I just thought of this one. Since "first instigated contact" (unlike "substantial" or "incidental") isn't really a judgment call, just a question of whether the official saw it or not, you could actually make it an (easily) reviewable call under replay. All an idiot like Hochuli or Triplette would have to do is watch the replays for one thing: who pushed first after the ball was in the air. Bad interference calls could get corrected, and the game-wasting time spent under the hood and making dissertation-length explanations reduced.
Like I said, ain't ever going to happen. The Vikings will likely win a Super Bowl before the NFL makes any serious change to the interference rules.
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