THEY'RE BACK, BABY!!
After a lockout that caused replacement referees to be brought in as scabs and officiate every game played to this point in the National Football League season, fans can finally rest assured that the experienced men who know the game best will be returning to the gridiron as soon as possible. The regulation referees will be back as soon as... TONIGHT.
Much ballyhoo has been made about the laughable gaffs that have been made by the replacement referees so far this season. Everything from missed calls to announcing penalties as being against the wrong team have made the entire ref debacle seem like it was written as an Adam Sandler vehicle. But the final straw came in a game between the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers where a blown call actually decided the outcome of the game on the final play.
After fans, players, and media jumped all over that outrageous outcome, the NFL and the referees began a marathon negotiation that lasted over two days, culminating with an agreement that will finally end a lockout that began back in June. The tentative eight-year deal is the longest such deal between referees and the league in NFL history, assuring that it will at least be a good while before fans are forced to suffer through replacement refs again.
No word yet on what will happen with MLB officiating, where blown calls decide the outcome of games EVERY FRIGGIN' NIGHT. (Institute replay! Make your voices heard! Aw I'm just mad because I'm Canadian and there's no hockey.)
Welcome the refs back by tuning in to the Browns at the Ravens in Baltimore tonight!