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'Index card' NFL referee Gene Steratore retires

By
The Sports Xchange
NFL officials Gene Steratore (L) and Bob Waggone talk on the field prior to the Baltimore Ravens' game against the Cleveland Browns on September 27, 2012 at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. File photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI
NFL officials Gene Steratore (L) and Bob Waggone talk on the field prior to the Baltimore Ravens' game against the Cleveland Browns on September 27, 2012 at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. File photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

Referee Gene Steratore -- who worked the Super Bowl in February and was involved in one of the most controversial on-field incidents in 2017 -- is retiring after 15 seasons, NFL vice president of officiating Al Riveron announced on Friday.

Cameron Filipe of Football Zebras reported that Steratore will join CBS Sports as a rules analyst.

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Steratore worked 12 playoff games since becoming an NFL official in 2003, including Super Bowl LII.

During a game between the Oakland Raiders and Dallas Cowboys last season, Steratore pulled out an index card and placed it between the football and chain stick to determine whether the Cowboys had achieved a crucial first down.

The Cowboys got the first down and went on to win the game, 20-17. Then-Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio protested and the NFL said later Steratore should have used his eyes and not the index card.

However, no further action was taken.

Last year, all 17 of the NFL's referees returned. Since the 2017 season ended, referees Steratore, Jeff Triplette, Ed Hochuli and Terry McAulay have retired.

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Triplette will join ESPN's Monday Night Football team, and it has been reported that McAulay will land a job with NBC, but that has not been confirmed.

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