The Missouri Massacre
Fox rules honcho Mike Pereira had the perfect response to Monday's Chiefs-Raiders officiating debacle
If you woke up this morning and checked the score of Monday Night Football after returning to earth from a months-long deep-space expedition, you would probably think it was a classic. A 30-29 AFC West shootout under the lights at Arrowhead. This is what primetime October football is meant to be, right?
Unfortunately, the box score tells only a fraction of the story. Yes, the game came down to the wire. Yes, Travis Kelce went thermonuclear. But the game will be remembered—if it’s remembered at all—for being one of the worst displays of NFL officiating this century. It all began with a pair of roughing-the-passer calls (or, in the case of Mahomes, a no-call) that had half of Missouri bursting a blood vessel.
Chiefs fans took it about as well as you might expect.
With a stadium full of coked-out dudes in Chiefs sportcoats and backwards visors calling for blood, the refs were rattled—zebras in the headlights, you might say.
Instead of sticking to their guns and calling a consistent game according to their interpretation of the rules, however, they started issuing some of the worst makeup calls you will ever see.
An unmitigated disaster from tip to tail. In fact, it got so bad that Fox rules analyst Mike Pereira even had to call in from the bar on to offer his thoughts on the chaos as it unfolded …
This tweet was brought to you by Tito’s Handmade Vodka! In all seriousness though, when you’re getting called out by one of your biggest schills who is just sitting at the bar trying to mind his own business on an off-day, you know you’re f—king up, and right now the NFL is f—king up. The pair of cheap hits and ensuing concussion to Tua Tagovailoa has plunged the NFL’s concussion protocol and roughing-the-passer enforcement into anarchy. On Sunday, Teddy Bridgewater was pulled from the Dolphins game against the Jets after one snap despite not exhibiting concussion symptoms. Then Tom Brady and the Buccaneers were the beneficiaries of a phantom RTP call on a hit not even one-millionth as vicious as the one Josh Toupu put on Tagovailoa two Thursdays ago. Then there was Monday night.
All of this is reactionary. All of this smacks of desperation. Right now the NFL and its officials are trying to respond to the outrage instead of getting out in front of it. They’re cowing to the fans and the Hot Media Narrative of the Week, and as a result cannot sustain even a faint modicum of consistency or logic. If Pereira can see that through his fifth mule of the night, Journey blaring on the jukebox, then surely Roger Goodell can too.