This Sunday is the National Football League’s championship game – Super Bowl LIII – and millions of football fans will have their eyes glued to television sets to watch the New England Patriots face off against the Los Angeles Rams. While the action on the field is what fans will focus on, the calls from the referees on the sidelines can have a real impact as well.
Controversial official calls have been at the forefront of the playoff season heading into the Super Bowl – some would go so far as to say officiant calls determined the teams who advanced to the big game. Whether that is true, there is no question referee calls can make or break a game for a team. Significant scoring opportunities to crushing momentum shifts can all be impacted by the guys wearing the striped shirts.
The eyes bearing the ultimate responsibility for making the calls during Sunday’s big game belong to John Parry, who is in his 12th season as a referee and 18th year as an NFL official.
What will those eyes be focused on? It is hard to say, but if the buzz leading up to Sunday’s game is any indication it is fair to say Mr. Parry will be keeping a sharp eye out for pass interference, helmet-to-helmet blows, catch completions and, perhaps, the esoteric “in the grasp” quarterback tackles.
Critical moments such as these are why many, including professional athletes, have turned to laser vision correction procedures to improve their vision so they don’t have to rely on contacts and glasses to see clearly. Because when you need sharp, accurate vision instantaneously, contacts and glasses have a habit of letting you down.
Even with the increase in instant replay reviews of calls, judging plays accurately puts intense demands on the referee’s vision. With all of the debate about rules and official calls going into it, there will be a lot of fan and league scrutiny on the performance of Mr. Parry’s eyes on Sunday.
Whether you are rooting for the Patriots or the Rams, everyone wants a great game with fair officiating on the field. We wish Mr. Parry the best on Sunday!