The numbers say there isn't much difference in the NFL with replacement officials. Comments from players and coaches say otherwise.
As fan outrage grows over calls and non-calls, delays in doling out penalties and indecision by the replacements, statistics show strong similarities between the number of flags thrown this year by the temporary crews and last year by the guys who currently are locked out.
"We are going to continue to do everything possible to raise the level of performance of the current officials" through training tapes, conference calls and meetings, NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said Wednesday.
The league does that with the regular officials, too.
One point of emphasis this week will be game control and making sure players are penalized for unnecessary actions ranging from roughness penalties to unsportsmanlike conduct.
Game control and simple professionalism by the officials have become key issues this week after complaints from a number of players.
Around the league
Redskins • Washington receiver Joshua Morgan felt the full downside of the social media age this week, receiving death threats and other venomous message on Twitter because of his fourth-quarter blunder in Sunday's loss to the St. Louis Rams.
Morgan talked Wednesday about the nastiness he's heard from fans since his unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for throwing the ball at Cortland Finnegan. The penalty cost the Redskins valuable field position during the team's final drive.
Giants • New York will be without NFC offensive player of the week Hakeem Nicks for Thursday's game against the Carolina Panthers (1-1).
Nicks, a wide receiver, has a foot injury, adding to the list of absentees when Giants (1-1) play their first road game of the season. New York made the announcement Wednesday after labeling running back Ahmad Bradshaw, offensive tackle David Diehl and another receiver, Domenik Hixon, out as well.
Browns • Cleveland linebacker Scott Fujita says he plans to reschedule his postponed meeting with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell about the bounty scandal.
Fujita had planned to speak with Goodell via a video conference Tuesday from Cleveland, but the league called it off because it wanted a face-to-face meeting.
• N.Y. Giants at Carolina, 6:20 p.m., NFL Network
• Tampa Bay at Dallas, 11 a.m.
• St. Louis at Chicago, 11 a.m.
• San Francisco at Minnesota, 11 a.m., Ch. 13
• Detroit at Tennessee, 11 a.m.
• Kansas City at New Orleans, 11 a.m.
• Cincinnati at Washington, 11 a.m., Ch. 2
• N.Y. Jets at Miami, 11 a.m.
• Buffalo at Cleveland, 11 a.m.
• Jacksonville at Indianapolis, 11 a.m.
• Philadelphia at Arizona, 2:05 p.m.
• Atlanta at San Diego, 2:05 p.m.
• Pittsburgh at Oakland, 2:25 p.m.
• Houston at Denver, 2:25 p.m., Ch. 2
• New England at Baltimore, 6:20 p.m., Ch. 5
• Green Bay at Seattle, 6:30 p.m., ESPN