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Pereira rips 'blowhard' Gruden for commentary on illegal hits

Mike Pereira won't be ordering that Jon Gruden Fathead any time soon.

Pereira, the NFL's former vice president of officiating who's found a nice little niche for himself as Fox's rules guy on Sundays, came down hard on Gruden in a Wednesday column on

"I am not a fan of Gruden's. Not today, not yesterday, not when I worked for the NFL and not when I was working on the field as a side judge," Pereira said of the former coach and current ESPN "Monday Night Football" analyst. "He was a loudmouth as a coach who constantly disrespected officials and he is a blowhard in the broadcast booth who spouts off when he doesn't know what he is talking about."

Pereira said Gruden "butchered" two plays regarding hits on defenseless receivers during Monday night's telecast of the Saints' win over the Falcons. Pereira went on to present the defenseless receiver guidelines as they appear in the NFL rulebook, then lambasted Gruden for his commentary on perceived inconsistencies in how officials view contact with receivers.

"Just throw the officials under the bus when you don't know the rules," Pereira said. "Officials are often criticized and sometimes, deservedly so. Not in this case, however. It is Gruden who deserves the criticism."

Pereira certainly seems to enjoy the spotlight, and he makes a convincing argument that Gruden was incorrect in his statements. Of course, if an announcer for Fox made similar statements, you have to wonder if Pereira would drop the hammer in the same way.

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