Sports | November 17, 2020 10:47 am

NFL to Use All-Black Referee Crew for First Time in Week 11 on “MNF”

The seven-man unit will be headed by referee Jerome Boger

NFL to Use All-Black Referee Crew for First Time in Week 11 on "MNF"
Referee Jerome Boger signals a declined penalty during a game between the Titans and Jets.
Getty Images

For the first time in league history, the NFL will deploy an all-Black officiating crew for a game.

Led by veteran referee Jerome Boger, the seven-man unit will preside over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers taking on the Los Angeles Rams on Monday Night Football to close out Week 11.

In addition to Boger, the crew will be rounded out by umpire Barry Anderson, down judge Julian Mapp, line judge Carl Johnson, field judge Dale Shaw, side judge Anthony Jeffries and back judge Greg Steed.

“This historic Week 11 crew is a testament to the countless and immeasurable contributions of Black officials to the game, their exemplary performance, and to the power of inclusion that is the hallmark of this great game,” NFL executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent told USA TODAY Sports.

The upcoming milestone arrives on the heels of the NFL implementing a seven-point mobility plan earlier this month that is designed to provide opportunities for minority coaches and front-office positions and lead to more diversity throughout a league in which about 70 percent of the players are minorities.

“We had to examine all we do and have done, and obviously things had not been working, so it took a complete reform,” Vincent told The Associated Press. “The resolution adopted is just a complement to what we have done in the expansion of the Rooney Rule through the years, and the media policy and the anti-tampering policy. It complements those other points of league and club education, and having diversity and equity-inclusion plans. It complements the identification of talent, the developing of talent, and networking of talent. Universal data collection and the reporting and measuring of the metrics. Now let’s see how we measure at the end.”