New England Patriots

Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots disputes a call with Referee Jerome Boger during the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Gillette Stadium on December 08, 2019 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

By Matt Dolloff,

BOSTON, Mass. — The NFL is in the midst of an officiating crisis, and it started well before Jerome Boger’s crew constantly screwed up during the Patriots’ loss to the Chiefs last Sunday in Foxboro.

Take biases out of it. For Boger’s crew to make so many egregious mistakes, in one of the biggest and most pivotal AFC games of the season, should be unacceptable to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and VP of football operations Troy Vincent.

Apparently, Vincent agrees. According to the NFL Network’s Judy Battista, Vincent will tell owners at the league meeting in Dallas that he plans a “top-down” review of officiating. This implies that the review goes all the way up to much-maligned senior VP of officiating Al Riveron.

Riveron has understandably been the target of much anger in his tenure, but the real problem lies with the men on the field.

Battista’s report suggests that there will be more of a focus on reviews of pass interference penalties, a new rule that has backfired tremendously and goes well beyond one poorly officiated ballgame. But the misadventure of Boger & Co. last Sunday in Foxboro was not an isolated incident. So hopefully, there’s a focus on the officials themselves and whether they can still keep up with the speed of today’s NFL.

There’s been very little turnover on officiating crews over the years. These guys are like Supreme Court justices. Perhaps this season’s turmoil will finally force the NFL’s hand on officiating crews that simply haven’t performed to an acceptable standard for a long time now.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at