Galloway: The NFL should get their act together

Noah Galloway

Looking ahead to Sunday, I can’t help but ponder who might be playing in this Super Bowl if the referees had seen a blatantly obvious call, and if a coin had bounced the other way.

shouldn’t feel any emotion of joy or despair depending on the outcome of the coin toss, but this is what happens as I sit on the edge of my seat waiting for a piece of silver to toss and turn in the air. By sheer chance one team has a significant advantage after the coin hits the turf. If a coin toss is this significant, a rule change must occur.

Near the end of the Chiefs and Patriots game, we were witnessing an offensive shootout with Mahomes and Brady trading punches. It was a magnificent game going into overtime, the type of game where whoever got the overtime coin toss would drive right down and score the game-winning touchdown.

That is what happened. Mahomes sat on the sideline waiting for a chance to play — but it never happened.

Prior to 2011, a team could win the game in overtime with just a field goal. Nowadays, if a team hits a field goal, the other team can tie or win the game on the following drive. But you can win the game on a first-drive touchdown, as the Patriots did. 

According to Yahoo Sports, since the new rule was implemented there have been eight postseason overtimes and five of them have ended with a touchdown on the opening drive.

On the other side of the bracket, the Saints would have been a lock for the Super Bowl if the referees called a blatantly obvious pass interference. The Washington Post said afterward Al Riveron, the NFL’s senior vice president of officiating, told Saints Coach Sean Payton that pass interference should have been called. 

The criticism of this call was widespread, and may lead to a rule change in the near future. A couple days after the missed call that would have sent the Saints to the Super Bowl, the NFL announced they would consider making pass interference calls reviewable. The replay system acts as a safety net to make sure that a human error doesn’t occur. The NFL then admitted to their wrongdoing.

Both of these game-changing events have put the NFL in a bad light, and rule changes should be expected. I’m relatively optimistic about the the pass interference review change since the NFL seems to have taken notice of this unfortunate situation. On the other hand, this is the fifth playoff game in the past seven years to end in a first-drive touchdown and the NFL still hasn’t done anything about it. Hopefully the league will get their act together so everyone doesn’t leave huge playoff games with a sour taste in their mouths.