In wake of NFC title game no-call, NFL to consider expanding replay reviews

The NFL will consider expanding replay reviews to include certain penalties, including pass interference.

Two people with direct knowledge of the NFL’s plans said that the league’s competition committee once again will look into including more plays for video review. The people stressed that the committee looks into the parameters of replay yearly. It has considered inclusion of what are considered judgment calls by officials in the past.

Officiating once more became a hot topic during Sunday’s NFC Championship Game. A missed call by referee Bill Vinovich’s crew of a blatant pass-interference penalty and helmet-to-helmet hit by Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman on New Orleans receiver Tommylee Lewis likely cost the Saints a spot in the Super Bowl.

New Orleans head coach Sean Payton said Al Riveron, the NFL’s senior vice president of officiating, told him afterward that a flag should have been thrown.

“Considering the current climate after what happened in New Orleans, yes, that’s something the committee once again will strongly look at,” one person said. “It gets talked about each year, but it’s not been something the ownership or the league has gone for.”

In other fallout realted to the perceived non-call:

•In the legal equivalent of a Hail Mary pass, two New Orleans season-ticket holders asked a judge to order NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to reverse the results of the NFC title game or schedule a do-over.

Their lawsuit, filed in state court, says Goodell should implement a league rule governing “extraordinarily unfair acts.” Remedies include reversal of a game’s result or the rescheduling of a game — in its entirety or from the point when the act occurred.

•The Rams and Patriots will be welcomed to Atlanta for the Super Bowl by several billboards saying “Saints got robbed” and “NFL bleaux it.”

WDSU-TV reports Louisiana car-dealership owner Matt Bowers paid for 10 billboards across Atlanta through Feb. 3, including one outside Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

•Add Louisiana’s governor to the list of people chastising the NFL about the officiating. Gov. John Bel Edwards sent a letter Tuesday to Goodell to express the “deep disappointment” of the people of Louisiana and Saints fans.

Briefly: Kansas City fired defensive coordinator Bob Sutton after a second-half collapse in the AFC title game, including an overtime period in which the Chiefs failed to stop New England on what turned out to be the only possession. … Longtime NFL assistant Tom Clements, 65, was hired as passing game coordinator/quarterbacks coach on the staff of new head coach Kliff Kingsbury in Arizona.

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/In-wake-of-NFC-title-game-no-call-NFL-to-13553582.php.

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