According to the members of the Competition Committee, including chairman Rich McKay, the proposal that passed yesterday that allowed offensive and defensive pass interference to be subject to re view came together quickly. McKay described it as making sausage in a day.
If you are a fan of the rule change, you might have Commissioner Roger Goodell to thank for it.
“I think everyone knows how I felt”, he said of the private conversation he had with the committee. “I felt very strongly, and I was very clear with the committee that we have an obligation to have a recommendation, and we need to get to a place” where they could propose a change that the owners would get behind.
Reportedly, the owners were by far the most reluctant group to do anything about the replay system. The coaches were virtually unanimous in their belief that some change needed to be made, and players who were in attendance felt that way as well. When the Competition Committee unanimously supported the proposal, that put the pressure on the owners to pass it.
“I think it was very important, because we all said officiating is never going to be perfect. We can use the technology to try and improve officiating. We do that every year. It evolves”, Goodell said. “Whether it’s our techniques, how we train, how we work with our officials on the field. But replay has been an important tool for us”.
“It wasn’t able to correct something that we wanted to have corrected in the past”, he went on. “That to me was the driving force ultimately at the end of the day. I think our clubs — including our coaches, owners and everyone else — realized that our job is to get these right, and we should use every available means to get them right, and replay was is a great means to be able to do that”.
Now, you could make every single play in every aspect subject to laborious review, making the game take days to play, and you still probably will not ger every single little thing right. Goodell isn’t looking for a perfect game, and he understands he will never get it. But he wants to see steps taken to improve the areas that are within their power to improve.
“Will this solve every problem? Will this get us to perfect?”, he asked “It’s the old saying: Don’t let perfect get in the way of better, and this is a very natural evolution and obviously a very positive thing”.