NFL wants referees to set early tone in 49ers-Seahawks NFC Championship Game

US PRESSWIRE

What can we expect from the referees in Sunday's NFC Championship Game? The NFL is hoping they set the tone early and prevent the game from getting out of control.

An issue we have discussed at length this week is how the referees will call the NFC Championship Game. The San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks both play particularly physical football. Add in the fact that they don't particularly like each other, and you've got a recipe for all sorts of issues for the referees.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport is reporting NFL VP of Officiating Dean Blandino has asked officials to set the tone early in order to prevent the game from getting out of control. Apparently the league sent along video from the first half of last week's 49ers-Panthers game to provide examples of what will and will not be tolerated this week. The linked article points to some specific examples of problems from the Panthers view, including some personal foul and pass interference issues. It mentions one instance of the 49ers committing defensive holding and not being called.

All I really ask for is consistency from the refs. If you're going to let the players get extra physical, make sure it is applicable to both sides. We saw it in the Wild Card round when the 49ers and Packers both got extra physical. The refs made some calls, but for the most part, it seemed like prison rules. I'd prefer the refs not let anything blatant get by, but if they're going to let stuff go, just be consistent.

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