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Referees will continue to waste time under the hood

Two days ago, we looked at the proposed rule changes for this NFL Annual Meeting. I liked almost all of them, but there was one modification that made the most sense: The Buffalo Bills proposed to limit the instant replay process to the replay booth. This would eliminate referees going "under the hood" to view replays. It would all be decided upstairs.

That was the most significant measure to fail on Wednesday.

It's a disappointment for fans that wanted a streamlined, faster replay process. Handling everything upstairs would speed up the process and allow the replay official in the booth to make faster decisions in a quiet, controlled environment. The referee has enough to worry about during the game. Why not give this most crucial part of his duties to someone solely focused on replays?

NFL owners passed some other key measures on Wednesday. The new overtime rules will now be a part of the regular season, not just the playoffs. All turnovers will automatically be reviewed, just like scoring plays.

That last measure is an improvement of the current replay process. It should help ensure the right call is made on the game's most crucial plays. By rejecting the Bills' proposal, however, the league didn't go far enough in improving replay's efficiency and efficacy on Wednesday.

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