The NFL's inability to resolve the conflict with its officials has forced one New Jersey state legislator to take matters into his own hands.
New Jersey State Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-Gloucester) has announced that he is planning to introduce legislation which will effectively ban replacement referees from officiating games in New Jersey.
"This past weekend in the NFL has not only made a mockery of a great sport, but shined a very bright light on how important fully trained and professional officiating is to player safety," Sweeney said in a statement. "We wouldn’t allow a factory or construction site to operate without fully trained supervisors on hand to ensure the safety of employees. Why should we do anything differently when the job site is a playing field?"
The announcement came hours after a botched call in Monday night's Seattle Seahawks-Green Bay Packers game may have affected the final outcome. Sweeney, who lives in a state which hosts two NFL teams, says his main concern is player safety. The four-term senator argues that the referees' inability to control the game could result in increased injuries.
"If the NFL insists on putting replacement officials on the field, putting players at risk, then the state shouldn’t be playing a part in that," Sweeney said.