As if the Lions needed even more adversity for the Week 2 trip to Green Bay, the planets aligned even more favorably for the Packers.
The officiating crew assignments for Week 2 are now out, and none other than Clete Blakeman will be the referee for Detroit’s visit to Lambeau Field. Yeah, that Clete Blakeman…
Flashback to Week 6 of 2019, Ford Field. The Lions lose to the Packers 23-22 after three inexplicably awful calls from Blakeman and his crew go against them. I wrote this about Blakeman and the game after rewatching this summer as part of the 2019 season review ,
I’ve been covering the NFL professionally since 2004 and watching football since the mid-1970s. I have never seen a single instance of the officials deciding the outcome of a game at any level of football more than this one. The Lions absolutely got hosed by Clete Blakeman and his clueless, biased crew. Blakeman effectively admitting he didn’t know what was going on in his postgame press conference–which he abruptly stopped–only reinforces my position.
Blakeman flagged Lions DE Trey Flowers twice for illegal hands to the face that were not in fact hands to the face infractions. Tracy Walker was also called for a personal foul on a terrible throw by Aaron Rodgers that he was trying to intercept.
1.-Tracy Walker sobre Geronimo Allison
Walker tiene todo el derecho de ir por el balón igual que Allison, lo que no puede hacer es bajar el casco ya que si se produce un golpe AUN QUE SEA ACCIDENTAL será sancionado con rudeza innecesaria golpe casco a casco ( fue lo que sucedió) pic.twitter.com/gw1ijgdCeo
— Packers México (@Packers_Mx) October 15, 2019
The NFL, under pressure from several former officials , later agreed this should not have been a penalty against Walker.
This will be the first time Blakeman has handled a Lions game since. His crew did work the Packers playoff win over Seattle in January, another game with some major officiating controversy , though his bumbling went against the Packers in that one. Blakeman was also the referee during the Browns-Steelers matchup that ended in a massive brawl last year.
Graphic courtesy NFL Officiating