Gayle Benson: “I will aggressively pursue changes in NFL policies”


Credit: New Orleans Saints Official Facebook

As most everyone is now aware, the Saints lost the NFC Championship game against the Los Angeles Rams. Many feel the game-changing play came when officials failed to call blatant pass interference by Rams CB Nickell Robey-Coleman. Robey-Coleman himself stated that he expected to receive a penalty on the play, telling Sports Illustrated: “Yes, I got there too early. I was beat, and I was trying to save the touchdown.” He also told media that he was surprised there was no flag, but that the referees were letting “more and more (calls) go as the game progressed.”

NFL officials later admitted to Saints coach Sean Payton that the call was missed, not only for pass interference but for helmet-to-helmet contact as well.

On Monday, in a statement to fans, Saints owner Gayle Benson said that “No team should ever be denied the opportunity to reach the title game (or simply win a game) based on the actions, or inactions of those charged with of those charged with creating a fair and equitable playing field.” She also promised to pursue changes in the way NFL officials operate, saying,

“I have been in touch with the NFL regarding yesterday’s events and will aggressively pursue changes in NFL policies to ensure no team and fan base is ever put in a similar position again. It is a disservice to our coaches, players, employees and, most importantly, the fans who make our game possible. The NFL must always commit to providing the most basic of expectations- fairness and integrity.”

Many have pointed to the fact that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell could give the Saints another opportunity, thanks to Rule 17, Section 2 (“Extraordinarily unfair acts”), Article 3 of the NFL rule book:

The Commissioner’s powers under this Section 2 include the imposition of monetary fines and draft-choice forfeitures, suspension of persons involved in unfair acts, and, if appropriate, the reversal of a game’s result or the rescheduling of a game, either from the beginning or from the point at which the extraordinary act occurred.

However, it seems unlikely that this will occur. To do so would upset not only Rams fans, but open up a can of worms that stretches across every game played in the NFL this season. Instead of pursuing this option, it seems that Mrs. Benson is looking forward to preventing something like this from happening again.

“Next season starts now,” she tells fans, “and I can’t wait to share it with you again.”

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2 thoughts on “Gayle Benson: “I will aggressively pursue changes in NFL policies”

  1. Thank You Mrs.Benson,,somebody need to do something,,,if it was left up to me,, all 3 or those Refs would be fired. They know what they did ,,didn’t even throw the flag.That man could have been seriously hurt,,,the refs just stood there,,their job is to throw the flag when something is wrong. There should be no favoritism on no team from the Refs. And Goodell is not a good commisioner to let it go like this. It is all about money,,money grabbers. Fire the dam refs.

  2. The no-call was outrageous! At least two referees saw it, if not three. The fact that the rules did not allow for a challenge in a championship game is unconscionable. The Saints deserve some kind of recompense from the NFL. So far we have yet to hear a peep out of Commissioner Goodell. He ought to be ashamed of himself, and the officials involved need to be fired. The penalty was blatant, incontrovertible, and impossible to miss! I still can’t believe it. Inexcusable.

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