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Every NFL game has two officials in the replay booth.
There’s the “replay official” and the “replay assistant.” Those two guys. That’s it.
When a referee goes under the hood, he’s consulting with the replay assistant. In Sunday’s Super Bowl, the replay assistant was a man from Denver named Jimmy Oldham.
As you’ll see from the pictures and comments below (which Mrs. Oldham publicly posted on Facebook), Oldham’s wife is a passionate Denver Broncos fan. Like really passionate, which begs the question: how on earth did the NFL assign Oldham to the Super Bowl and expect him to remain unbiased?
None of this would matter, of course, if Jerricho Cotchery’s catch was called a catch, but it wasn’t. Anyone with two eyes and half a brain knows the Panthers’ veteran receiver hauled in that pass — Jim Nantz, Phil Simms, and CBS officiating expert Mike Carey all agreed that Cotchery got his hand under the ball and maintained possession. More importantly, the millions of us watching the game at home witnessed the same thing.
But the pass was ruled incomplete, and given the fact that Oldham lives in Denver in the same abode as the most fervent Denver Broncos fan on the planet, we’d like to publicly question how the fuck the NFL let him play such a critical role in the most important game of the season.
Whether or not you believe Oldham could have remained unbiased when analyzing the Cotchery catch with Blakeman is up to you (the call on the field, according to the rules, ultimately comes down to the referee), but the issue remains that in the biggest game of the year, the NFL didn’t vet the officiating crew.
Please remember: Oldham and his wife aren’t the villains. We presume they’re benevolent tax-paying Americans who are covered by Nationwide and order pizzas from a man who loves fresh ingredients and mafioso smooches.
The imbeciles here, per usual, work at the NFL. With their expansive network of officials, they chose Oldham to work the Super Bowl, which at the very least, presents a clear conflict of interest. Couple that with a game-defining faux pas, and it’s impossible not to question the ethics of everyone involved.
The Broncos won the game. They deserve their Lombardi Trophy. But for Panthers’ fans and the millions who put money on Carolina, the revelation that the husband and father to die-hard Broncos fans had a say in “The Cotch Botch” scandal must feel like a sucker punch to the gut from Roger Goodell…
Make your mornings glorious..