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Replacement refs bad business for NFL?
Replacement referees confer during the 2012 NFL season opener between the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys.
September 7th, 2012
01:07 PM ET

Replacement refs bad business for NFL?

By Gavin Godfrey, CNN

(CNN) – The National Football League's 2012 regular season is underway.

For the first time in NFL history, replacement referees are making the calls on the field. Labor talks between the NFL and their referees have gone nowhere and both players and coaches have voiced their disappointment.

So does the current situation with its referees spell bad business for the league? Does a second lockout in less than 13 months mean Commissioner Roger Goodell is failing as a CEO?

According to players like retired Pro Bowl punt returner Allen Rossum, this case is another example of Goodell and the league trying to do too much.

[1:07] "Overall I think he wants to control and have complete control."

On the other side of the coin, sports economy experts like Dr. Thomas Smith of Emory University see Goodell as someone just doing his job. He says the commissioner shouldn't be judged by either this lockout or the previous player lockout.

[2:22] "The league continues to grow financially with respect to the viewership. For all intents and purposes it's any given Sunday, anybody can win, and that's what you want from us, that's what you want from a sporting league. There's lots of ways you could say he's winning the game."

Listen to the complete story above and join the conversation below.

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soundoff (12 Responses)
  1. Dan

    I'm ready for footboll but will not watch scab refs...about ready to go exclusively college when scab players came in...took several years before I fully came back.

    September 16, 2012 at 9:10 pm | Report abuse |
  2. GARY from South Dakota

    Looks like too me the more they stay out the more there not needed THANKS UNION outdated that you are

    September 9, 2012 at 7:10 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Tom

    Inow it is a difficult situation concerning the labor issue. But we need to overcome some of these issues with common sense. We(as a nation) shot ourselves in the foot with the auto and steel industry. I was a part of that in my earlier years and hate how i came out. We were so greedy(as union members) that it killed a lot of our dreams for our kids. We should take blame for shipping the industry and jobs to other countries. My time in those industries made a good life for myself, but at what cost? T refs and the NFL need to both suck it up and agree to agree or......the replacement refs will just continue and things will be fine.

    September 7, 2012 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
  4. D. Jaco

    Love the replacements. The refs want to be overpaid just like the players. All about $$$$$$ that turns me off to watching.

    September 7, 2012 at 5:54 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Roz

    Fix it.
    You made it happen with the players.

    September 7, 2012 at 5:27 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Merle

    So far, I like the new refs... They were spot on in the Giants vs Dallas game

    September 7, 2012 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
  7. oldpatriot

    we will soon see how committed the football fans are to labor and labor movements – will the fans stay home out of respect for the strikers or will they watch a game with scabs?

    September 7, 2012 at 4:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian in DC

      I'm going to watch the game. Apparently, 22+million people felt the same way on Wednesday (NY vs DAL). The refs did a decent job in that game although my team lost.

      September 7, 2012 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Snitfister

    Right on, Tom! How about when the commentators tell you that the referee has been a referee for 22 years, but of course, that was with Division II football.... so, that makes the guy totally incompetent at this level? I am sick of the ref bashing. Anyone can be replaced-including NFL referees, obviously.

    September 7, 2012 at 4:07 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Dedra

    Dr. Smith sounds like a really smart man. He had some great points, and he looks at it from a business perspective. Much better input than the person who talked about the commissioner and his appearance

    September 7, 2012 at 4:02 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Tom

    Gimme a break.....even the full time zebras mess things up...remember when they screwed up a simple coin toss! These guys are being totally unreasonable in their contract requests. Since when do part time employees get better benefits than any full time employee gets? Think about it.....all the networks keep posting the fill in ref's real jobs and seem to want us to laugh at them...guess what, some of the regular refs hve the same type of real jobs, but no one ever brings it up. I have personally been around some of the full time ref teams when they travel and they travel, stay, eat and drink like kings. They are spoiled and heed to be brought back to reality.

    September 7, 2012 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
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