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Sunday, January 11, 2009
A simple solution to 'natural delay'

By Paul Kuharsky
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky

I have a strong opinion on the "natural delay" that Ravens-Titans referee Terry McAulay says is built into a delay of game call.

We hit on the controversy in Saturday's game here and here.

If the back judge watches the play clock, and when it hits zero then finds the ball and judges whether it's been snapped, wouldn't an alteration of the protocol ensure no further potential for mistakes?

Instead of starting to look for the ball when he's seen the clock go to zero, why doesn't he look for the ball when the clock hits one? He can count to one while he finds the ball, and be in a better position to judge if it's snapped on time, don't you think?