Let me start by saying referees have one of the most demanding jobs.
They go out week after week for a part-time job, and are berated and criticized constantly.
Does that sound like a job I could do?
Not at all.
I have heard numerous football fans remark that they could do a better job.
But the answer is no, you don't want to go through that sh*t the zebras do each week.
I have respect for the referees doing their jobs, but this season, the game of football has been one I haven't enjoyed watching.
And it is because of the refs.
There is no shortage of big-time plays happening each week in various games. However, several of those exciting plays have been taken back because of flags.
That is right; there are far too many flags being thrown for calls that are either too insignificant to be noticed, even in slow-motion replays, or enforcing some silly and ambiguous rule that the NFL officials have decided to use to make fans feel stupid.
The games have been extended to accommodate all of the penalties thrown out by the referees, making the games even more difficult to sit and watch.
What's supposed to be a three-hour game turns into an exhausting four and a half hour contest.
Games starting at 1 are now ending around 5 pm, and that isn't even counting potential overtimes.
Not only do these excessive flags delay the games, they also take the fun out of football.
A 40-yard pass completion from your favorite quarterback to his number one receiver for a touchdown is enough to make you jump out of your Sunday spot on the couch, yell and throw out high fives.
However, that is all taken away once you notice the yellow flag hurtling toward the line of scrimmage.
Then you know the play is coming back because the football gods are not on your side.
Why do they have to torture us so?
It seems this season every major play has some sort of holding penalty or illegal block that takes it away.
Sure, there are plays that are completely clean that lead to exciting touchdowns, but more often than not, you can almost always count on a yellow projectile finding its way to the field.
So who is to blame?
Is it the referees for getting so flag-happy that they feel they MUST bring back the play for some microscopic foul?
Is it the players, for pushing the boundaries of the rules enough where the referees actually notice?
Or is the blame on something bigger, like the NFL, for its crazy book of rules that has baffled coaches and fans alike for years?
We're never going to know, so we'll just place the blame on the shoulders of those who we expect to know the game better than we do.
And that would be the referees.
They're an easy target because they are the ones throwing the flags.
Whether it is their fault or not, they are ruining the viewing experience of our sacred Sunday afternoons.
Too many flags, too many penalties.
What happened to just "let them play until the whistle blows?"
Well, chances are the referees this season never got that memo.