Emmanuel Sanders Questions Why The Refs Keep Throwing Flags On Saints

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Saints receiver Emmanuel Sanders joined Uninterrupted this week and shared his frustration with NFL officiating. He hinted at an anti-Saints bias amongst officials, a theory strongly supported by the infamous non-call for pass interference that cost the Saints an NFC Championship in 2019.

“I’ve never seen the calls that they make and then the calls that we don’t get, you know.”

No, we don’t know because the New Orleans Saints have never had the luxury of relying on the zebras. Some teams may just have incredibly bad luck, but perhaps others have done something to anger the officials. It’s possible that Sean Payton’s past complaints about officiating have caused the calls the Saints see today.

Most NFL head coaches will at least pretend to tolerate league mistakes, but not Payton. He issues strong criticisms and demands that the league fix mistakes immediately, a move that surely ruffles some feathers. These officials are humans after all, and their own attitudes could be getting in the way.

The Saints come into the weekend as the third-most penalized team in the NFL, behind only the Jets and Cardinals, two young teams with at least a plausible excuse for their lack of discipline. The Saints, on the other hand, have no logical explanation for the miscues. A 43-year-old Drew Brees is leading the third most undisciplined team in the NFL?

Highly doubtful.

What’s the long game?

We saw in this year’s NBA playoffs that the Lakers complained about a lack of calls, then proceeded to lead the playoffs in free throw attempts. Sometimes complaining draws attention to things that need fixing. Whether those arguments are warranted or not isn’t important, but it’s possible that Payton’s complaints could challenge officials to throw the Saints a bone on Sunday.

NFL officials are under intense scrutiny. They already have thick skin and likely won’t fold to social media pressure. We would assume Sanders will be fined for his statements, but hopefully he won’t have spent that money in vain.

Written by Gary Sheffield, Jr

Gary Sheffield Jr is the son of should-be MLB Hall of Famer, Gary Sheffield. He covers basketball and baseball for OutKick.com, chats with the Purple and Gold faithful on LakersNation, and shitposts on Twitter. You can follow him at GarySheffieldJr


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