The NFL is officially on the look out for replacement officials. The league and its set of officials are negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement, and with the talks currently at an impasse, the NFL announced on Monday that they are starting to prepare replacement officials.
Negotiations with the NFL Referees Association on a new collective bargaining agreement remain unresolved and the previous CBA has expired. Therefore, in order to ensure that there is no disruption to NFL games this season we will proceed immediately with the hiring and training of replacement officials.
Our goal is to maintain the highest quality of officiating for our teams, players, and fans, including proper enforcement of the playing rules and efficient management of our games.
Another negotiating session took place Sunday under the auspices of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service. We appreciate the efforts of the FMCS and will continue to be available to the NFLRA and the FMCS to negotiate a fair resolution. We have great respect for our officials and in keeping with that view have made a proposal that includes substantial increases in compensation for all game officials.
The previous CBA expired at the end of May. The two sides have been negotiating under the FMCS, which is the same organization that participated in the CBA talks between the players and owners last summer.
It's still too early to be be worrying about this a whole lot because there's plenty of time for the two sides to negotiate a new agreement. Neither the NFL nor the referees union want to use replacement referees so something will likely eventually get done.