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N.J. state senator pushing to ban replacement refs

Outrage over Monday night's replacement referee meltdown has reached the highest levels of government. Sort of.

New Jersey State Senate president Steve Sweeney has announced plans to introduce legislation to ban professional sporting events manned by replacement officials, per a Tuesday report from CBS New York.

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"This past weekend in the NFL has not only made a mockery of a great sport, but shined a very bright light on how important fully trained and professional officiating is to player safety," Sweeney said in a statement. "We wouldn't allow a factory or construction site to operate without fully trained supervisors on hand to ensure the safety of employees. Why should we do anything differently when the job site is a playing field?"

Beyond inconsistent calls by the replacement officials, players -- including New York Giants linebacker Mathias Kiwanuka -- have argued that illegal play is proceeding unhindered in games. Kiwanuka and a handful of teammates stated the fill-in refs aren't catching aggressive action in the trenches or holding and jabbing downfield.

The sense is that too many games, like we saw Monday night, have spun out of control. Sweeney's plan is to battle this with legislation, but that's an uphill climb. The NFL can solve this more rapidly than anyone else, and that's what everyone's waiting to happen.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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