The Detroit Lions were the latest NFL team to have a beef with the officiating after a series of mistakes doomed them against the Green Bay Packers, and as a result, the league and its referee system is under fire from plenty of talking heads.
Former quarterback Dan Orlovsky had plenty to say about the mishaps and gaffes which cost the Lions against the Packers, and as he said, it’s time for the league and specifically, it’s owners to step up and take notice of what’s going on in their game.
Here’s a look at what Orlovsky said:
“Owners, I’m talking to you. You don’t have a problem, you have an epidemic,” Orlovsky said. “Your product is slowly being ruined by a third party that has no consequence to their actions. You may not pay a lot of attention to social media, but you should. Because not thousands of people, not tens of thousands of people, but millions of people are unhappy right now. And unhappy people don’t spend money.”
Lions fans, league legends and even bombastic members of the media seem to agree that the league needs a major fix in terms of the officials getting things right on the field, and Orlovksy was simply another personality that stepped up to make his opinion known.
Now’s the Time
According to Orlovsky, too many games are falling into the category of being victimized by frustration with the officials, and the league needs to act sooner rather than later for a solution.
“This isn’t a 2020 fix. This is an October 15, 2019 morning fix,” Orlovsky said. “Your product is being ruined. You need to fix this now. That’s the reality of this situation. We can no longer come on shows after a really good football game and have to talk about bad officiating. The Detroit Lions fans and team should not have to go, oh, we should have played better.”
As he predicts, the fans are going to check out because they are tired of all the countless mistakes ruining the game.
“They’re impacting too many football games, and I’m telling you, fans are sick of it,” he said.
So what is the ideal solution for this problem? As Orlovsky sees it, reviews from a third party in the booth should be instantaneous for every single flag.
“Every time a flag is thrown, there is somebody in a booth and you either confirm or overturn that flag,” he said. “If they throw that flag for Trey Flowers, someone in the booth can go I can confirm that, or overturn that right now. It’s timeless, you don’t have to waste time on it. But we can’t consistently go hey guys, we’re sorry, we were wrong.”
The league constantly walks calls back, apologizes for mistakes they identify and do nothing to fix the problem. Avoiding the mistakes in the first place would be a huge step for them getting things right. There has to be some sort of compromise that leads the league to have better reviews of their calls and their officials.
Orlovsky is frustrated and it’s easy to see why. The game he loves is under assault.