IRVING, Texas – Head coach Jason Garrett may want to change his opinion on the replacement officials after last night's debacle in Seattle.
Garrett said before the Monday Night Football game between Seattle and Green Bay, in which the officials called a game-winning touchdown on a catch that appeared to be an interception by a Packers defender, that he's made it a point to tell his players not to tear into the officials or let them alter their attention.
"We have talked a lot about that, and I think that's an important thing for our football team is to focus on us," Garrett said. "You prepare for an opponent. You want to know an opponent inside and out, but when it comes down to it, you have to focus on yourself come game day. I think the same thing applies to the officials."
The league has informed coaches and players they can't scream at or rip officials as much as they have through the first three weeks of the season. Fines have already been doled out, including to the Broncos' head coach John Fox and defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio, for berating the officials.
Garrett said there's a line between asking for more communication to address a situation and just screaming in anger. He said he thinks his coaches and players have done well at not letting the officials affect their psyche or be a distraction thus far.
"There have been times where there have been calls during the game where you naturally react to it, everybody does," Garrett said. "At the same time, it's like, 'Guys, get back. Just focus on doing your job.'"
For Packers players, both on the field and on social media after their 14-13 loss Monday, containing themselves wasn't easy. Garrett talked about the officials before the game-altering call that forced players across the league to take to Twitter and voice their outrage.
"They're going to be fine," Garrett said. "They'll spot it the right way. They'll call it the right way. They'll get it figured out. We've really tried to do that. I've harped on that during the week and prior to the game as well."