The Los Angeles Rams got some huge help from the referees in reaching Super Bowl LIII, and now they may get even more help in the big game itself, in the form of head referee John Parry.
The Rams were the benefactor of one of the most controversial non-calls in recent NFL history — a blatant pass interference on cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman, that would likely have allowed the New Orleans Saints to ice the game had it been called. The call was missed, and instead, the Rams went on to tie the game and then win it in overtime.
More help could be coming in the Super Bowl with Parry, who is part of the officiating crew. The longtime NFL referee has a very good history with the Rams (and not so much with the Patriots).
Here are the top 5 reasons why referee John Parry will be good for the Rams in Super Bowl LIII:
1. The team’s stellar record with him on the field.
As Rams Wire noted, Los Angeles is 7-0 since 2008 when John Parry is assigned to their games. Since this stretches across all kinds of seasons (including many bad ones, a few different head coaches, and most of the seasons in St. Louis) for the Rams, it seems to hint that Parry may have an unconscious bias toward the Rams. Or, it could be that the Rams are just on their best behavior when he is on the field.
The Rams are unbeaten in games reffed by John Parry ????— OddsShark (@OddsShark) January 25, 2019
Does that give LA an edge in the Super Bowl?
Your favorite ref handicapper @chalk_ninja did a complete betting breakdown of this year's #SuperBowl crew:https://t.co/BMvinIHQhg
2. Parry has a quick whistle with the Patriots.
For as good as he’s been to the Rams, Parry has been very bad for the New England Patriots. The report noted that he refereed only one Patriots game this year, a loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, in which the Patriots were called for a season-high 14 penalties.
3. Referees tend to swallow the whistle in the Super Bowl.
While having John Parry on the field may already give the Rams an advantage, the historic tendency to let the teams play could also work in their favor. As ESPN found, referees call 9.8 percent fewer penalties in the Super Bowl compared to the regular season.
That could help the Rams, who are playing a team noted for its discipline under head coach Bill Belichick. With fewer penalty flags being thrown, it could negate a historic advantage for the New England Patriots.
4. Parry could be trouble for an oft-penalized Patriots lineman.
As ESPN noted in its guide to Super Bowl officiating, Parry was among the top among NFL referees in the number of offensive holding penalties called this season. The report noted that this could be particular trouble for one Patriots lineman.
“The player to watch here is Patriots left tackle Trent Brown, who was penalized seven times for offensive holding during the regular season, tied for the fourth most in the league,” the report noted.
5. It’s always good to have luck on your side against the Patriots.
The New England Patriots are very, very difficult to beat in the Super Bowl — at least with Tom Brady and Bill Belichick on the field. It often takes a miraculous catch (like David Tyree’s helmet catch) or a miraculous trick play (like last year’s Philly Special). If having John Parry on their side can add just a little bit of extra luck to the Los Angeles Rams, then they could be that much closer to knocking off the Patriots.