The honeymoon with the regular officials is officially over thanks to the worst official in all of sports, Jeff Triplette.
Having covered many games Triplette has officiated (many, many games) he is always the overseer of screwy calls, missed calls, and stupid calls. Many players have told me he is the game's most-disliked official.
It was Triplette who threw his flag into the eye of Orlando Brown -- ostensibly ending Brown's career. Triplette is also infamous for falling for Peyton Manning's fake spike, blowing the live play dead, and costing the Colts a touchdown.
Triplette was the ref at Sunday's Packers-Saints game and he was in regular-season Triplette form.
Around the league, as the regulars took full control from the replacements, order was restored. Much of football on Sunday went like this: smooth, no craziness, no stupidity. You could see the increased professionalism and control.
Games flowed much more smoothly and refs were quick to keep tempers in check. Overall, it was a great day for the refs. It was a brilliant day for the regular refs.
Except for Triplette. First, Triplette and his crew missed a blatant push-off by the Saints' Marques Colston against Packers defensive back Morgan Burnett. Colston caught a 20-yard touchdown pass on the play.
Then came the huge bad call late in the game. Darren Sproles clearly fumbled and while it was difficult to tell who recovered the ball was easy to see that Sproles fumbled.
Triplette ruled Sproles was down by contact.
And Triplette strikes again.
On a day the refs overall did incredibly well.