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The NFL has confirmed a woman will be among the group of referees used as replacements during the current lockout of NFL officials.

Shannon Eastin could be the woman. She worked the Arizona Cardinals Red and White game and was named by the Los Angeles Times as one of the referees at an NFL training clinic.

A woman has never officiated an NFL game in an on-field capacity. Last year the NFL said there were several women in the pipeline. When Carl Johnson, the NFL's head of officials, was asked about the potential of adding a woman to the roster last year, he said it would happen soon.

"Our goal is to get the best people working this game," Johnson said.

Eastin has officiated college games for over a decade, most recently in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference. The league is not officially confirming individual referees, and is not making any replacements available to the media.

I honestly don't see this as that big of a deal. There are female referees in the NBA, obviously it doesn't make a bit of difference. That said, Shannon Eastin - who is speculated as being the referee in question - could be the first woman to ever don an NFL referee uniform on the field, that is pretty cool.

The referee lockout has been one of the least talked about stories of the offseason thus far. Personally, I think the officiating in NFL games is usually some of the best in sports. Sure they blow their fair share of calls but it's not nearly as bad as the NBA, or even MLB.

Anyway, I remember a couple years ago the NBA referees had a lockout of their own and the league employed replacement referees. If you thought the normal refs were bad...

Man or woman, it won't make the fans any less pissed if the refs blow a call.

I sure won't miss Ed Hochuli though.

Mike Saver 8/01/2012 11:47:00 AM Edit
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