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Why Aren’t We Reviewing Every Play in NFL Games?

Last Sunday I watched the Steelers execute their biggest choke-job in home-field history, blowing a 16 point lead to fall to the Chargers. On the road of this heart-breaker, we were served up this abomination:


Now this is not to complain that my team was bent over a barrel, because a loss is a loss at this point and I’m over it. However, this play gave Al Michaels the chance to remind us that this play was not reviewable because penalties as a whole, are not reviewable. Even though I already knew this fact, it really started to sit with me. Why with dozens of cameras on the field, and multiple replay officials, are we still not reviewing stuff? Why with millions of dollars invested in every NFL game – directly and indirectly, are we allowing human error to play such a big part? This is a non-comprehensive list of things that are not reviewable:

  1. Penalties
  2. Clock errors
  3. Field goals that go over the upright
  4. Spot of the ball calls, not relating to a first down or touchdown
  5. Egregious false starts on the Chargers jabroni of a right tackle


You can’t challenge the spot of the ball on just any old play? Did everyone know this? I need an explanation. I need a lot of explanations, NFL. I can understand 3 & 4 on the above list. Field goal reviews won’t accomplish much and you don’t want a James Franklin type challenging for an extra yard for his running back in the fourth quarter. But penalties!? It makes zero sense. A referee is going to miss stuff. Just like the miss that a receiver got both feet down sometimes, they can miss penalties. And clock errors? Don’t even get me started.

The only acceptable argument against more replay is that it would create an equal amount of new problems. If you challenge a flag on the field, and it gets picked up, how do you deal with the rest of the play because it was already stopped on the field. I get it. But plays like the above can and should be fixed. All other arguments aside, there is simply no reason not to. You’re already wasting your life watching football for 15 hours a week, and you’re gonna complain about 3 more minutes? DO NOT be that guy. Review the plays, NFL. It’s not that hard.




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