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Dean Blandino: Veteran WRs helping clarify 'catch rule'

  • By Jeremy Bergman
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The NFL is working hard to remedy one of the league's most pressing competitive issues and has sought out veterans and legends for advice.

Vice President of Officiating Dean Blandino told NFL Network's Dan Hellie on Tuesday that the league has reached out to former wide receivers for input and opinion regarding the league's ambiguous catch rule. Among the players involved in the discussion were Cris Carter, Tim Brown, Steve Largent, Randy Moss, Chad Lewis and injured Packers wide receiver Jordy Nelson.

"There's a subjective element to the rule and we want to get some more input," Blandino explained. "What better way and what better people than former receivers? We had several former receivers to look at some plays, get some feedback.

"It was a really good group and a healthy discussion about what is a catch, what isn't a catch. We looked at a lot of plays over the last 10 to 15 years and got their feedback, and we'll share that with the competition committee when we got through that process in February."

Blandino was optimistic that the catch rule could be clarified following the competition committee's next meeting.

"I think we have a better understanding of the rule," Blandino continued. "Just to hear from their perspective, having done it for so long and made so many amazing catches, just what is going through a receiver's mind when he jumps up for the ball or he's going to the ground. I think the biggest thing was the receivers and the players, they'll go by whatever rule it is. Just give us that direction and we'll abide by it."

Fans and players alike would appreciate any direction at all. In a calendar year that brought us the Golden Tate end-zone juggleOdell Beckham's drop against New England, and of course, the Dez Bryant disaster in Green Bay, many around the league are growing weary over debating what a catch is. Hopefully, this step to reach out to the experts -- the men who catch these inflated pigskins cowhides for a living -- will enlighten everyone involved.


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