PITTSBURGH -- Change is likely coming to video review of disputed calls, and Roger Goodell endorsed the NFL becoming part of the process during his state of the league address.
Whether more centralized video review would apply to missed calls, such as the illegal formation on a missed field goal that likely kept the Pittsburgh Steelers" target="_blank">Pittsburgh Steelers out of the playoffs, remains to be seen.
But Goodell acknowledged that the NFL has to provide more help to referees, who have increasingly come under fire for missed calls and calls that aren’t made correctly even after they are officially reviewed.
“What we all want is consistency, fairness in our officiating and we believe that we might be able to achieve more consistency when there’s more of a centralized version and decision-making process,” Goodell said, “and that’s something the competition committee is going to consider over the next two months and come back with a recommendation for the membership.”
Any recommendations by the competition committee, of which Steelers coach Mike Tomlin is a member, would have to be approved by three-fourths of the NFL owners (24 of 32).
“I do believe there’s a possibility that some version of (video review) will occur where our office can at least be involved with the decision," Goodell said. "Maybe not make the decision but at least can provide some input that would be helpful to the officials on the field to make sure they’re seeing every angle to make sure they have the proper opportunity to make the best decision.”
Here are a couple of other issues that Goodell addressed during the commissioner's question and answer session with the Super Bowl media.
Goodell renewed his push to expand the playoffs from 12 to 14 teams. He didn’t provide specifics on how the format would change, but the most logical one would be for the No. 1 seeds in the AFC and NFC to receive a bye and then become a part of the final four in each conference following the opening round of the playoffs. “We think we can make the matchups more competitive toward the end of the season,” Goodell said of expanding the playoffs. “There will be more excitement, more memorable moments for our fans and that’s something that attracts us and we think we can do it properly from a competitive standpoint. This will continue to get very serious by the competition committee and then ownership would have to vote for it.”
A code of conduct code be instituted in the aftermath of the Jonathan Martin-Richie Incognito controversy in Miami and the light it shined on locker room conduct. “I’ve already begun discussions with outside parties. I’ve discussed that with the union. I’ve also met with several groups of players to talk about the circumstances," Goodell said. "What needs to be done? What do we all want? The No. 1 thing I hear and the No. 1 thing that I believe is we all have to get back to respect. It’s respect for each other, respect for the games, respect for your organizations, respect for your opponents. I do expect changes as we go forward.”
Super Bowl Saturday? The NFL was prepared to move this year’s game up a day but only in the event of weather complication. It isn’t going anywhere for now as far as time slot and day of the game. “Our network partners believe we’re created a wonderful Super Sunday,” Goodell said. "I don’t see that changing very near future.”