After a season in which pass interference rereading journals were an infamous topic, competition committee chairman Rich McKay reported that the one-year proposal would not be renewed for the 2020 season, according to an interview with SiriusXM NFL Radio. McKay announced that since neither the competition committee nor any team has offered to extend the rule change only in 2019 to add pass interference to the list of reviewable games for the 2020 season, the ability to review pass interference is “dead by natural death”.
Coaches, players and fans were able to witness the results of an instinctive reaction to a bad call, as it became a headache from the start. McKay noted, as we have all predicted, that allowing the review of such a subjective appeal would be problematic, even with the “clear and obvious” standard set. Of the 102 regular season and playoff games in 2019 that have had offensive or defensive pass interference revised, only 24 of the field calls have been changed; a simple 23.5% reversal rate. Only 3 of these 24 inversions picked up flags thrown for pass interference, as the remaining 21 reversals called pass interference when it had not been called in the field. Twenty of the 102 games reviewed, just under 20%, were launched through the rehearsal booth, and the remaining 80% were requested through a coaching challenge.
McKay, who is also the president and CEO of the Atlanta Falcons, admitted that the combination of a subjective appeal with a subjective proofreading process was put in place for widespread disagreement. The replay was designed to correct calls for goals, such as the ball breaking the goal line plan, or if a catcher had both feet within a catch. The subjective nature of a call to judgment as a passing interference would never see constant success in proofreading.
Many believed that examining pass interference would be the key to preventing a draw like the one we all saw in the 2018 NFC Championship game. The reality is that it just caused more headaches than he did not resolve them, and as the disadvantages outweighed the advantages, they were eliminated. In an off-season that nobody expected, it seemed that nobody wanted to tinker with the rule, but rather repeal it entirely instead by not offering an extension.