The cool thing about wall-to-wall coverage in 2014 is the fact that everything is covered in-depth. Blogs and websites dedicate themselves to everything from the usual topics to analysis of the media (sports coverage about sports coverage) to grading officials from each sport.
As such, it feels like we are more familiar with NFL referees than we ever were in the past. We actually know which ones are good and which ones are bad. And Jeff Triplette, well, he’s been bad. That made it awfully surprising when the NFL announced that Triplette would be in the spotlight for Sunday’s wild card game between the San Diego Chargers and Cincinnati Bengals.
You didn’t have to look far for reactions like this one from Robert Klemko of Sports Illustrated:
I still cant believe Jeff Triplette is reffing a game in Cincinnati. The league is just trolling us now.
— Robert Klemko (@RobertKlemko) January 5, 2014
What might be the most telling is the tweet from Mike Pereira, former VP of NFL officiating who is now an analyst for Fox’s coverage:
In the studio.In Cincinnati Jeff Triplette has two members his crew with him, umpire and line judge. I’m pulling for them!
— Mike Pereira (@MikePereira) January 5, 2014
That’s just kind of sad, isn’t it? Everybody knows that we are expecting the worst from Triplette. “Pulling” for him and his crew equals cheering for them to shock the world and not do a terrible job today…in an NFL playoff game.
Seriously, why are they officiating this game?