The Tennessee Titans didn’t play last week, but some news came out of the team’s camp when coach Mike Vrabel suggested to fellow coaches and general managers that more time should be spent focusing on training the league’s officiating crews.
The NFL sends an officiating video each week for coaches and general managers to review, and Vrabel replied to all in a response making it clear he wasn’t happy with the job being done this season by the officials, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Vrabel acknowledged Monday that officials have a difficult job while also going more in depth about his concerns.
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“The only other job that’s harder than playing is officiating,” Vrabel said. “I was just trying to make my point or say my piece (in the email). Just striving for a level of consistency each and every week. Things that look like foul are foul and things that aren’t aren’t. Making sure you’re not seeing one thing on TV one week and seeing something different the other (week).”
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The Titans denied The Tennessean’s request for the email, which in Schefter’s report read, “I appreciate the time and energy that goes into these videos, but I suggest we devote every minute of our officiating departments’ time ensuring our officiating crews are as well trained in the clarifications we worked to create in the offseason and that each crew is as consistent as possible. Thank you.”
Vrabel used the name of two of his own children – Carter and Tyler – to point out the need for consistency in officiating while relating it to coaching.
“It’s like coaching,” Vrabel said. “You want to try to be consistent so that when one kid says, ‘Well, Tyler did this and he didn’t get in trouble. Well, Carter… .’ You know what I mean? That’s what happens You just try to set a level of consistency with the players; what they can legally do and what they can’t. If it’s defensive pass interference because you’re not playing the ball and there’s contact, great, we all understand that.”
Vrabel is one of four coaches who serves on the NFL’s competition committee. One of the functions of the committee is to deal with potential rule changes made after the season, and Vrabel indicated it was separate from this current issue with the officials.
“My role with the competition committee is just to try to help with clarifications, things that we talked about in the offseason and try to come up with ideas that are going to help us,” he said.
Reach Mike Organ at 615-259-8021 or on Twitter @MikeOrganWriter.