Give Aaron Rodgers credit. He doesn’t like where the replacement referee situation is, and he’s doing something about it.
On Mr. Butte’s Milwaukee-based radio show on Tuesday, the host and Green Bay Packers quarterback let fly on not just last night’s bizarre (and, in some ways, horrific) ending, but also on the entire referee strike being botched by the NFL and its competing unions. And, Rodgers addressed a group of people who have been largely overlooked thus far… the fans.
“I think first of all, I’ve got to do something that the NFL is not going to do and apologize to the fans,” he said. “The product that is on the field is not being complimented by an appropriate set of officials. The games are getting out of control.”
Rodgers also didn’t have too many gratifying things to say about the NFL’s decision on Tuesday to allow the touchdown to stand.
“That’s garbage, obviously… They’re covering their butt here.”
It’s been a little difficult – overwhelming and exhausting – hearing everyone and anyone gripe about this season’s officiating bumbles. They started off as minor issues, and they have inevitably begun to effect games with all-or-nothing efficiency.
There are reasons for this. One, of course, is that the replacement refs aren’t as good as the regular ones, but that probably has more to do with their inability to manage the game than it does with their inability to make proper calls. After all, anyone who has ever refereed any sport knows that the walls close in once you lose control of the game. Your calls don’t get worse, they just started to occur more often. Two, maybe, is that we expect the refs to be worse, so we focus on their bad calls more than we did last year.
Three, obviously, is that every reason you could think of has merged into one perfect storm.
Aaron Rodgers, to his credit, is not standing for it. He is in unique position, where he has won a Super Bowl, he is a future Hall of Famer, he might be the best quarterback in the NFL, and he has his own radio show. He has a platform. He’s the king of the National Football League’s most beloved franchise.
Aaron Rodgers can do anything he wants, and he is (apparently) not afraid of being fined.
Good on Rodgers for saying what he believes, because people like him have to.