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Gene Steratore becomes 4th NFL official, and 2nd this week, to retire this offseason


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Gene Steratore becomes 4th NFL official, and 2nd this week, to retire this offseason

Gene Steratore has become the fourth NFL referee -- and the second this week -- to retire this offseason in what has become an unexpected exodus from the league. Steratore is working to finalize a deal to join CBS Sports as a rules analyst, two sources confirmed to ESPN.

Football Zebras first reported Steratore's pending move to CBS. Neither Steratore nor CBS Sports immediately responded to a request for comment.

Steratore, whose last NFL game was Super Bowl LII, informed the league of his decision Friday, according to senior vice president of officiating Al Riveron.

The league did not immediately name a replacement.

Steratore followed fellow referees Ed Hochuli, Jeff Triplette and Terry McAulay into retirement.

Triplette is joining ESPN as a rules analyst and McAulay is being hired by NBC Sports, according to sources. Hochuli is serving as a consultant to Riveron. NBC also interviewed current referee Clete Blakeman for its job, but Blakeman turned it down.

In 12 seasons as an NFL referee, Steratore earned a reputation as a colorful and fair game administrator who worked with players to minimize tensions during games.

He was involved in some of the more memorable calls in recent years, including both of the incompletions -- one thrown to the Detroit LionsCalvin Johnson in 2010 and the other to the Dallas CowboysDez Bryant in the 2014 playoffs -- that ultimately prompted a change to the catch rule this spring.

Steratore also drew attention last season when he used an index card to measure whether the Cowboys had converted a first down against the Oakland Raiders. Steratore said later that the note card was a "reaffirmation" of his initial measurement. The NFL said he did not violate any rules, and the incident did not impact the league's decision to select him to referee the Super Bowl.

Riveron, however, advised referees against using note cards in the future.

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23 hours ago, Bugg said:

How does Jeff Triplette, who cannot conduct a coin flip competently, get hired by any network? If you look up "befuddled" in the dictionary, it has a picture of Jeff Triplette. 

Holy sh!t you were right. 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

NFL's roster of officials includes seven rookies

NEW YORK -- The NFL roster of game officials for the upcoming season includes seven rookies among the 121.

The newcomers announced Friday are: field judges Land Clark of the Pac-12, Matt Edwards and Don Willard of the Big Ten, and Anthony Jeffries of the SEC; side judge Chad Hill of the SEC; back judge Tony Josselyn of the SEC; and line judge Mark Stewart of the Big 12.

The league also promoted Shawn Hochuli, Alex Kemp, Clay Martin and Shawn Smith to referee. Each was a referee at college football's top division before entering the NFL at different positions. Hochuli's father, Ed, and Kemp's father, Stan, were NFL referees.

Officials Mike Spanier and Mike Weatherford will not be assigned to crews. They'll work with different crews throughout the season.

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