Colts Jerraud Powers Admits Players Trying To Game The Replacement Refs

John Grieshop - Getty Images

Cornerbacks and wide receivers, long handcuffed by a fairly recent emphasis on rules which limit contact after five yards, are taking advantage of the NFL replacement referees (a.k.a., scab refs) lack of knowledge of the NFL rulebook.

It's the substitute teacher rule.

When the real authority figures in the classroom aren't there to keep order, and they are replaced with less-than-equipped temporary substitutes, the students WILL take advantage of the situation. It's human nature.

The same is going on in the NFL. Cornerbacks and wide receivers, long handcuffed by a fairly recent emphasis on rules which limit contact after five yards, are taking advantage of the NFL replacement referees (a.k.a., scab refs) lack of knowledge of the NFL rulebook.

Colts cornerback Jerraud Powers spoke about this with media earlier this week:

"It's like, 'let's test the the limit'," said Powers. "Receivers are doing the same thing. 'What am I going to get away with today?' You can't really fault them. If that's how the flow of the game is going, as a player you've got to adapt to the flow of the game. It's been some criticizing of the replacements. But it's like anything else. As a player you just have to go out there and play and whatever happens, happens."

Is this against the rules? No, of course not. If the refs aren't going to call things according to the rules, then it's the job of the players to see where they can bend those rules to get a competitive advantage. Let's face it, with the way the Colts corners have played these first three games, they need all the help they can get.

However, the hit Steelers DB Ryan Mundy put on Raiders WR Darius Heyward-Bey this past Sunday are another result of players taking advantage of scab refs. Mundy's hit was a textbook illegal play. Had real refs been in control of that game, Mundy likely would have been ejected from the game for leaving his feet. Mundy knew this. I don't care what he may or may not have said publicly after the game. He knew. That's why he did it. He knew he could get away with it.

Heyward-Bey was motionless on the ground for several minutes before being taken off on a stretcher. He was released from the hospital on Tuesday and is expected to make a full recovery.

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