Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Perhaps He's in the Wrong Business

Though the season is only five weeks old, we now have three weeks that have seen all-biceps referee Ed Hochuli blow a call. If a game-deciding call against the San Diego Chargers during week 2 wasn't enough, he later called a helmet-to-helmet penalty on Carolina's Julius Peppers that appeared to be more in the shoulder region. However, Ed continued to ice his creatine cake with last night's gaffe against the New Orleans Saints.
Minnesota linebacker Chad Greenway grabbed Reggie Bush's face mask before sliding his other hand around the flashy running back's body to force a fumble. The Vikings were awarded the ball, even though replays clearly showed the infraction - much to the chagrin of the home crowd.Penalties cannot be reviewed in the NFL's replay system.
Now, I have to agree with the fact that penalties cannot be reviewed. The games would last forever, and frankly there are bound to be non-calls. But when the NFL has changed the rules this season to incorporate larger punishments for facemask penalties, this is something that cannot be missed. But if that wasn't enough...
Later in the quarter, 2007 NFL Rookie of the Year Adrian Peterson appeared to fumble the ball as he was being tackled, but Hochuli ruled that although the ball was coming loose, Peterson still had it in his possession.
There is no doubt that every move Hochuli moves is under scrutiny. He's one of the NFL's most popular officials. However, if he keeps making the wrong calls in these games, one has to wonder what the future holds for the big man. This has been one heck of a season thus far, and we are not even half way through...