National Football League to use all-Black officiating crew for Monday's Rams-Bucs game

Ross Houston
November 24, 2020

The gesture is in celebration of the NFL's 100 year anniversary, and the referees are reportedly set to officiate "Monday Night Football" for the Buccaneers vs. Rams game in Tampa Bay. The outlet notes the officials were pulled from various crews, "allowing the league to make a social statement".

For the first time, an all-Black referee crew will officiate an National Football League game as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers face the Los Angeles Rams in Tampa.

Boger, who is beginning his 17th season as a ref, is one of four black crew chiefs but is the first to lead an all-black crew.

Los Angeles Rams Matt Gay (1) misses a field goal against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the second half of an NFL football game Monday, Nov. 23, 2020, in Tampa, Fla.

"I am proud of my heritage and excited about my participation in this historic game", Boger said in a statement.

Both the Bucs and the Rams have played a role in advancing diversity efforts in their own rights, USA Today NFL columnist Jarrett Bell points out. The crew has a combined 89 seasons in the league and has worked six Super Bowls.

The NFL typically assembles its 17 officiating crews prior to the season and works to keep them together for each game to promote cohesion and communication.

Boger was the referee for Super Bowl XLVII, and Anderson, Johnson and Steed were part of the Super Bowl LIV officiating crew, which included the most minority officials for a Super Bowl, according to the NFL.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) is pressued by Los Angeles Rams linebacker Justin Hollins (58) during the second half of an NFL football game Monday, Nov. 23, 2020, in Tampa, Fla.

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