The Green Bay Packers play in a critical NFC matchup tonight, and fans across the country will cross their fingers that the officiating is fair and balanced.
This year more than ever, it feels like referees are having a direct effect on the outcome of games.
On Sunday, a late touchdown from the Chiefs was wiped off the board due to Kadarius Toney being offsides.
“I never use any of this as excuses, but normally I get a warning before something like that happens in a big game,” Reid said. ”(It’s) a bit embarrassing in the National Football League for that to take place. … Normally, yeah, if it’s even close you get a warning. The head coach gets a warning, I mean that normally — I don’t know, I didn’t have a protractor out there. But it’s a bit embarrassing.”
While he was clearly offsides on the replay, It’s a penalty rarely called until this season. There have been 13 offensive offside penalties in 2023, including a few against Philadelphia on the “tush push” play. There were only seven total in the previous three seasons combined.
Green Bay Packers Star David Bakhtiari Speaks Out Against NFL Officiating
David Bakhtiari has never been one to stay silent on issues he feels strongly about— and while the Packers’ left tackle is currently rehabbing from injury — he still watches games on Sunday.
Yesterday, former Packers’ great Mark Tauscher tweeted that he wished the regular season was handled more like the postseason when it came to officiating.
“I wish NFL regular season was officiated more like the playoffs where the refs let them play. It makes the games so much more enjoyable too watch,” Tauscher said. “This is not fun.”
Every player feels this way! Only throw a flag if it’s egregious!!! https://t.co/67LjVJOHK8
— David Bakhtiari (@DavidBakhtiari) December 11, 2023
The current Green Bay Packers left tackle immediately chimed in.
“Every player feels this way! Only throw a flag if it’s egregious!!!,” Bakhtiari said.
Green Bay Packers At Front Of Officiating Controversy Last Week
Just a week ago, the Pack were at the forefront of multiple questionable calls in their upset victory over the Kansas City Chiefs.
On the final drive, Packers’ safety Jonathan Owens was flagged for a late hit on Patrick Mahomes even though it was clear Mahomes was a runner and hadn’t gone out of bounds yet.
Jonathan Owens was flagged for a late hit on Patrick Mahomes on this play. pic.twitter.com/rpTBgajBAW
— ESPN (@espn) December 4, 2023
Bakhtiari had strong words for that call, too, that could have cost the Packers the win.
Established himself as a runner. Didn’t give himself up. Was in bounds. That’s so bad. Bullshit.
— David Bakhtiari (@DavidBakhtiari) December 4, 2023
There was also a controversy from Chiefs fans, supporters and players who believed there was clear pass interference on the final play that wasn’t called.
Yesterday, Mahomes couldn’t contain his frustration with the referees and was caught throwing his helmet in disgust by cameras.
In his post-game presser, the Chiefs’ star opted to mention the controversial non-call against the Green Bay Packers.
“I know as fans you want to see the guys on the field decide the game and that’s why last week I didn’t say anything about the flag that didn’t get called on Marquez,” Mahomes said. “I mean, they’re human, they make mistakes but it’s every week we’re talking about something and all I can do is go out there and give everything I have. … It’s just tough to swallow.”
When it’s all said and done, it’s clear everyone just wants consistent officiating on a weekly basis. Unfortunately, this has been a problem for years and it doesn’t feel like it will be immediately rectified.