All offseason, the story surrounding the NFL was that the New Orleans Saints had been done wrong by referees. The missed pass interference penalty in the NFC Championship was viewed as a primary reason for the Rams going to Super Bowl LIII instead of Drew Brees and company, and this play created a new league rule. Unfortunately for the Saints, the issues with the referees has not gotten any better with the start of the 2019 season.
Sunday afternoon, the Rams and Saints were locked in a fierce battle at the LA Coliseum. Jared Goff wanted to get his young team to 2-0 on the season while head coach Sean Payton wanted to exact revenge on the team that sent him home early.
The tides seemed to turn early for the Saints when defensive end Cameron Jordan picked up a Jared Goff fumble and raced untouched for a touchdown. Unfortunately for him, however, the referees had blown the play dead.
This should've been a touchdown for Cam Jordan and the Saints!
Refs screwed them over. SMH pic.twitter.com/1HJWqAjFfj— #BOOMIN (@ftbeard_17) September 15, 2019
Following the review, it was determined that Goff had indeed fumbled, awarding the Saints possession. Although they were forced to start the drive clear back at their own 13-yard line instead of lining up for an extra point. As expected, this move sent the Saints fans into a rage due to the referees "robbing them" once again.
Of course, this call was only made worse considering that the referees had directly impacted the season-opening battle with the Houston Texans. In that instance, the Saints lost a considerable amount of time heading toward halftime after the referees mistakenly took an extra 15 seconds off of the clock and forced the Saints to attempt a long field goal earlier than they preferred. This kick by Will Lutz was no good.
The referees do not have a personal vendetta against the Saints, but their fans are finding that far more difficult to believe with each passing week. It's truly wild that this many mistakes could be made that directly impacted one specific team.
Maybe the referees simply are so nervous about causing an uproar among Saints fans that they are over-correcting and going too far in the other direction. Maybe they have the yips. At this point, the answer is unknown, but this issue does not appear to be going away in the near future. If the Saints lose critical games against the Seahawks or Cowboys based on penalties or bad calls, both the fans and head coach Sean Payton will go ballistic.