When there's a labor impasse I don't automatically blame management, don't automatically blame players and don't automatically contend that both sides are greedy.
But even though I think Roger Goodell has been a brilliant commissioner, I blame him, and the league, for the impasse with officials.
The NFL announced Wednesday afternoon that replacement officials would open the season.
It's like opening the season with replacement players, most from small colleges. Let the junior varsity games begin.
Some of the replacement officials undoubtedly have NFL talent. But they don't have NFL experience. They're being put in position to fail, and many will. They'll be overmatched by the speed of a regular-season game, and everybody wearing helmets and pads and watching from the bleachers and on TV will know.
Players and coaches and fans blame accredited officials. So the replacements will be guilty until proven otherwise, and they won't have the opportunity to prove otherwise.
I attended the first three exhibition games played by the Carolina Panthers and the replacement officials, in their struggles to get everything right, slowed the game down.
If I'm Goodell, I begin a new quest -- get the officials a contract. Give a little. Give unti it hurts. And despite Wednesday's announcement get the officials on the field by opening day.