Unfiltered Findings: The NFL has Two Big Problems

The QB Conundrum

Kansas City Chiefs fans are breathing a big sigh of relief today because their elite, yes, he’s already considered elite in my book, QB Patrick Mahomes apparent knee injury isn’t as bad as expected. The bad news is, the Chiefs will be rolling out Matt Moore under center for the foreseeable future. Nothing against Matt Moore, but the Chiefs offense went from running like a Lamborghini to sputtering along link a Ford Pinto.

Very few teams have the luxury of having a serviceable backup QB. Saints backup Teddy Bridgewater is probably the exception to the rule. But everywhere else, there is a big drop-off from the starter to the backup. In some cases, a team’s system hides the flaws of the backups. You are seeing that in Pittsburgh right now and have seen it in the past with New England (I’m looking at you Matt Cassel). And then there are teams like the Redskins who, no matter which QB they roll out, it’s going to be a shit show.

I do have a solution. It’s the same solution people have been asking for since NFL Europe shuttered in 2007. The league needs a minor league system that they operate. Not the XFL, that’s just another soon-to-be failed attempt for a money grab and did you see the cavalcade of chumps the league is filling their rosters with? The NFL needs its own sanctioned and run minor league that will help develop players. As a Redskins fan, I’d like Dwayne Haskins getting more reps, but not in real games. He’s already proven he needs more developing.

Each division would get its own team, if I were setting up this league, and could designate any player that is a draft pick to a third-year player, with the exception of QBs and injured vets. In addition, this league can help develop referees and experiment with rule changes and develop coaches. And, this league would run concurrent with the NFL season and in the spring. They can play on Tuesday nights in the fall and Saturdays in the spring. This isn’t a league that the NFL should be trying to figure out how to make money with. The NFL already makes millions upon millions. This league would be an investment into the future of the league.

Think about this for a second. The NFL is the only major sports league without a minor league system. And, if the league wants to go to a 17 or 18 game schedule, there are going to be even more injuries. There needs to be a pipeline of prepared players that can help protect the quality of the product.

The NFL’s Bigger Problem

In the first part of this week’s offering, I discussed the need for a minor league. Developing referees would be part of that program. But, that’s not the only fix the NFL needs for officiating.

The league needs to face facts. The officiating sucks. And, it is getting worse each year. But, again, a league that makes millions upon millions does not see it fit to hire full-time referees or put more eyes on the field. And, they only react when the officiating affects the playoffs like the Tuck Rule and the new pass interference challenge system. The Saints should have been in the Super Bowl last year if it wasn’t for the officiating. But, tell that to the Detroit Lions, who may have had their playoff hopes crushed in a Week 6 match-up due to shitty officiating. And, while I don’t feel sorry for any degenerate gamblers, the officiating affects their bottom line as well.

Mostly, the poor officiating tells me that a league that makes a shit ton of money, doesn’t care about the product they produce. It may not affect the bottom line right now, but keep it up and it will. In other words, get off your ass Roger Goodell, you overpaid stiff, and do something that is good for the league. Owners, open your wallets, they are already full, and invest in this issue. Pay these refs better, make them full-time employees, train the hell out of them, and hold them more accountable.

RobbUnfiltered is a sports podcast based out of Richmond, Va. Check out our website at http://www.robbunfiltered.com. Find me on Twitter @RobbUnfiltered. Email me at robbunfiltered@gmail.com.

This show is sponsored by On The Rox, Ponies & Pints, and Social 52, which are all located in Richmond, Va.

I’m RobbUnfiltered. Sports. Life. Zero Fucks.

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