Mike Pereira has been so outspoken in his role as the NFL's hall monitor for Fox Sports that even Bill Belichick is outsourcing his opinion of replacement officials to him. And if the early returns are any indication, the scabs are indeed going to be a disaster. But remember: Pereira used to work for the NFL as its vice president of officiating. And back in 2001, when the league last had labor issues with its officials, Pereira was more than eager to toe the company line.
CBS Sports's Mike Freeman dug up an old Dallas Morning News story in which Pereira offered praise for the work of some replacement refs. The article also referenced a memo Pereira had written to the replacements that included these words:
"We are using you because of your ability and instincts as an official. The game is the same no matter on what level it is played. You officiate the game and we will guide you through the differences in the rules."
To which Freeman added:
But wait, it gets more interesting. The article states this: "One of the alternate officials was Mike Pereira, whose day job is as the NFL's director of officiating."
So, if the article is accurate, Peirera was a backup replacement official.
Huh. It was only last month that Pereira said "the integrity of the game will be compromised" by the presence of the replacements. Either scabs aren't what they used to be, or Peirera isn't.