Patriots Have Solid Record Under NFL’s New Officiating Leadership Team


The NFL has turned Dean Blandino’s old job of senior vice president of officiating into three separate roles. The league announced Wednesday who will fill those roles.

Alberto Riveron will take on the title of senior vice president of officiating, Russell Yurk will be the league’s vice president of replay and administration, and Wayne Mackie will serve as vice president of officiating evaluation and development. Riveron and Mackie are former NFL officials. All three will serve under NFL executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent.

Weeks after the NFL adopted a centralized instant replay system that would have given Blandino final say on all reviews, he left the league for a job in media at FOX.

Riveron will replace Blandino as an overseer of the NFL’s officiating department while Yurk “will direct the league’s instant replay operations in the Art McNally GameDay Central room and oversee all instant replay-related personnel.” Mackie is “responsible for the officiating evaluation and development program.”

Riveron, Yurk and Mackie “will all work in GameDay Central throughout the season and have the final say on instant replay decisions, in consultation with the referee as part of the new replay rules for the 2017 season,” according to the NFL.

Riveron refereed nine Patriots games during his officiating career, which spanned from 2004 to 2012. The Patriots were 8-1 in those games, including their AFC championship win over the Baltimore Ravens in the 2011 playoffs.

Mackie has served as head linesman in 13 Patriots games since 2007. The Patriots are 10-3 in those games and have a 4-0 playoff record in games Mackie has refereed.

Mackie was the head lineman for the Patriots’ divisional-round win over the Baltimore Ravens in the 2014 playoffs, when New England broke out creative ineligible formations. He also reffed the Patriots’ AFC Championship Game win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in January that sent them to Super Bowl LI.

Thumbnail photo via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports Images

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