Today in the owners’ meetings in Orlando, Florida a monumental decision was made by the owners and league officials to pass what is known and “Rule Proposal 9.” What the passing of Rule Proposal 9 does is signify the centralization of the replay system. As NFL fans we can all remember a time when an incorrect call is made on the field, the play gets reviewed, and the incorrect call is still enforced by the in game officials. It seems like those days are now over.
The NHL has gone to a centralized review system and it seems to be working great for them. In the current NHL system, all reviews are sent to the main office in Toronto which watches the play in question and then renders his decision to the ref on the field. From what I understand, the NFL system is as follows. In the NFL’s newly approved review system, as soon as the play is challenged, the officials in the NFL’s New York office will assess the replays as soon as one team decides to challenge the play. Once the on field referee approaches the replay area, the main office in NY will already have reviewed the instant replay footage, and will inform the head official on the field of what specific things to look for while reviewing the play.
I can’t deny that I am a fan of the new replay system. Why not just let the center in NY make the call and have that official on field relay the call from central like in Hockey? I just think it would make everything run a little bit smoother. Also, the players and coaches on field know that the ref doesn’t have control to make that controversial call. In my mind it would be better to have them made at the central office rather than the official that is standing in front of them. Either way I think I the owners got it right here. At the end of the day it is about making the correct call, this is a positive step in ensuring that it is accurate.