Referee Bill Vinovich to lead Super Bowl LVIII officiating crew: Why it’s more important than you might think

Referee Bill Vinovich will lead the officiating crew for Super Bowl LVIII, the league announced Tuesday. This will be the third time Vinovich will be the referee for a Super Bowl.

Officiating has been a hot button topic for many seasons with this year being no exception. This includes the Detroit Lions’ officiating gripes concerning the eligible receiver controversy involving tackle Taylor Decker in a loss to the Dallas Cowboys in Week 17.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell recently lauded the league’s officiating in Detroit during an appearance to promote the 2024 NFL Draft.

“They are the hardest-working people I see,” Goodell said. “They take great pride in it. There are individuals who work to try to make sure they’re contributing to the game, but we have technology to try to do that, too. I’m very proud of what they do.”

Vinovich was the referee for one of the most controversial officiating decisions in sports history five years ago.

The league admitted Los Angeles Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman should have been flagged for defensive pass interference and a helmet-to-helmet penalty on New Orleans Saints wideout Tommylee Lewis toward the end of regulation during the end of the 2018 NFC Championship game. Instead, the lack of a flag became known as the “NOLA No Call.” The call would have likely clinched the Saints’ second-ever Super Bowl berth. Instead, the Rams won the game in overtime.


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The grouping of officials change for the Super Bowl as the league uses an “all-star” crew, rather than the cohesive group guided by Vinovich during the season.

Here’s a glimpse at who’s joining Vinovich’s crew in Las Vegas:

  • Umpire: Terry Killens
  • Down judge: Patrick Holt
  • Line judge: Mark Perlman
  • Field judge: Tom Hill
  • Side judge: Allen Baynes
  • Back judge: Brad Freeman
  • Replay official: Mike Chase

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(Photo: Maddie Meyer / Getty Images)

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