NFL Fans Are Thrilled That The League Is Exploring Technology To Finally Replace The Chain Gang

NFL chain gang
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No more old, crusty men determining the spot of a ball when technology 100% exists to make those calls automatically? Yeah, sign me up.

The National Football League is a pretty forward-thinking operation, whose business is exploding, with a salary cap that has doubled since 2013.

With all the controversy about how bad NFL officiating is, you’d think Roger Goodell and the league office would do all in their power to fix that issue, lest we face any more “NFL IS RIGGED” allegations. Thankfully, a remedy to bad spots could be on the way, in the form of optical tracking technology that’d render the chain gang obsolete.

Not to rain all over the fine folks in charge of marking off down and distance. They do a decent job all things considered. Nor am I all for automation replacing every job in every corner of the American workforce. Some jobs require a human touch and always will. This is decidedly not one of those jobs.

We’ve gotten way too many weird spot situations over the years. Did my best to compile some of them. There was even a spot controversy in the latest Super Bowl that sent certain viewers into a tizzy over nothing.

The Steelers iced their win over the Rams earlier this season on a Kenny Pickett sneak, which tracking technology almost certainly would’ve revealed wasn’t actually a first down.

Ain’t no f*cking way Pickett got that first down. But this is the type of game he gets credit for winning. Imagine an alternate reality where chain gangs didn’t decide this outcome. A Rams rally to victory could’ve kept Pittsburgh home for the playoffs. Instead, the Steelers went up to Buffalo and inevitably got pummeled by the Bills in a borderline meaningless Wild Card Weekend matchup.

Before we get into the reactions to this welcome change in ball spotting policy that can’t come soon enough, who could forget the infamous index card game?

The strangely selective usage of technology never ceases to crack me up. Like sure, let’s use high-def cameras and capture replays from every conceivable angle to get those calls right, but at the same time, let’s make sure we keep chain gangs employed to occasionally botch spots in critical situations.

It’s always refreshing to see a common-sense issue in any context that the vast majority of people can rally around. Abolishing the chain gang — or at least relegating them to backup duty — is the clear best way forward for the NFL in the eyes of many.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock