In light of Monday night's blasphemous circus, NFL fans are everywhere are left defeated and concerned. Most of the anger has been directed toward league commissioner Roger Goodell, although the 32 owners and NFLRA are also guilty parties. With this thing still not done, I'm prepared to say everyone involved as it fault.
Decisions by the replacement refs, like the one between Seattle and Green Bay, are not only detrimental to the teams directly involved in that game, but also a large portion of the NFL landscape. The teams that are receiving second-degree burns from last night are of course the division rivals: San Francisco, Arizona and St. Louis.
And for Green Bay, instead of being near the top of the NFC at 2-1, the Packers are near the bottom at 1-2. Seattle basically held their head high after a win they didn't earn -- it was disrespectful all around. These are going to have long-term effects in the form of playoff implications. God forbid the Packers miss the playoffs by a 1-game margin.
As a writer, all I could do was try to view this thing from different perspectives. One of the interesting ones I landed on was, "What if the 49ers were the team that benefitted from this call?"
I'll be honest, of course I'd take the win, but I would not discuss the game the following week. I would not brag about it and it sure wouldn't feel like a victory. I was sort of astounded at Pete Carroll's body language and demeanor after the game. In his post-game presser, he acted like it was a totally normal game and they won a hard-fought, fair battle.
I don't know what game he was watching.
Then I began to wonder, how would Jim Harbaugh take this, as a coach on both ends. If he were either the head coach of the team that won or the team that lost. Since Harbaugh since an animated, particular character, seeing him deal with Monday night's fiasco would have been Pay Per View worthy.
Harbaugh as Carroll:
I don't think Harbaugh would be nearly as enthused by this win as Carroll was. Of course it's hard to make this assumption because there is no relatable instance to draw from, but Harbaugh is a straight-shooter who has a firm understanding of what winning is and is supposed to feel like: he would know it wasn't pure.
Harbaugh as McCarthy:
Just kidding. But Harbaugh would be livid to say the least. This is a man who's blood-pressure skyrockets when there's an uncalled holding or chop block on one of his players. If the referees cost his team a game, which is a week's preparation and hard work, I can't imagine Harbaugh would be too thrilled. He'd be ready for a fistfight. You have to respect McCarthy's composure during and after the debacle.
...Continuing with changing perspectives, how would 49ers fans feel coming away with a win off a blown call? Would we be proud or would we tell it like it is?
If you're having difficult being imaginative, here is some substance, because it's happened before.
More than NFL wanted to admit on Tuesday, the league promptly came out and said they blew the call in the 2002 NFC Wild Card game. NFL VP of Officiating Mike Pereira confirmed that the Giants player downfield was eligible, and thus a pass interference call would have been the correct call.
This was not something that would have changed the score of the game like with Monday night's incident, but it would have extended the game and provided the Giants with another opportunity.
I guess all we can say is "bummer."