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“The time is now,” he said. “How much longer are we going to keep going through this whole process? I don’t have the answer. I just know across the league teams and the league are being affected by it. It’s not just this game, it’s all across the league. And so if they want the league to have the same reputation it’s always had, they’ll address the problem. Get the regular referees in here and let the games play themselves out.

“We already have controversy enough with the regular refs calling the plays.”

The problems continued Monday night when Peyton Manning led the Denver Broncos against the Atlanta Falcons.

The officials missed a call on Denver’s first touchdown, ruling that Demaryius Thomas was pushed out of bounds. The replay clearly showed he got both feet down, and the call was reversed after a review.

The Falcons’ first score also was reversed, this time with the officials ruling, with help from a replay, that Michael Turner actually landed short of the goal line. He wound up scoring on the next play.

In the second half, the officials got mixed up on where to place the ball after a defensive holding penalty on Champ Bailey. The crowd booed while the officials conferred, finally moving it a few yards forward to the proper spot.

It was those sort of delays that helped the game drag on for nearly 3 1/2 hours.

Despite the public outcry, the league backed the replacement crews, a collection of small-college officials who have been studying NFL rules since the summer.

“Officiating is never perfect. The current officials have made great strides and are performing admirably under unprecedented scrutiny and great pressure,” NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said in an email to The Associated Press. “As we do every season, we will work to improve officiating and are confident that the game officials will show continued improvement.”

While some of the mistakes on Sunday were judgment calls _ such as a pass interference penalty on Pittsburgh defensive back Ike Taylor in which he appeared to miss a New York Jets receiver _ the more egregious errors appear to be misinterpretations of rules.

In St. Louis’ 31-28 victory over Washington, Rams coach Jeff Fisher challenged a second-quarter fumble by running back Steven Jackson near the goal line and it was overturned. The Rams ended up kicking a field goal, which was the margin of victory.

The problem there was a coach is not allowed to challenge a play when a turnover is ruled on the field. It should’ve been an automatic 15-yard penalty on Fisher. Also, if Fisher threw the red challenge flag before the replay official initiated the review, then a review is not allowed and the Redskins would’ve kept the ball.

“I just think that they’re just so inconsistent that it definitely has an effect on the games,” Redskins linebacker London Fletcher said. “You were hoping it would get better, but everybody is having to dealing with it.”

In the Cleveland-Cincinnati game, the clock continued to run after an incomplete pass by Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton in the second quarter. A total of 29 seconds ticked off, and the Browns ended the half with the ball at their 29. Perhaps an extra half-minute could’ve helped the drive. The Bengals won 34-27.

“Missed calls & bad calls are going to happen,” Browns linebacker Scott Fujita, an NFLPA executive council member, wrote on Twitter. “That’s part of the deal & we can all live with it. But not knowing all the rules and major procedural errors (like allowing the clock to run after an incomplete pass) are completely unacceptable. Enough already.”

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