Some have said Golden Tate’s last-second touchdown during Seattle’s last meeting with Green Bay was the worst call ever. Whether it was or not, it likely wasn’t just coincidence that the call was followed quickly by the end of the lockout for the NFL’s regular referees.
The controversial call won Seattle the game, 14-12. The official that made the call said the whole experience was definitely a game-changer for him too.
“For me, my life was pretty much turned upside down,” Lance Easley tells 770 KTTH’s David Boze. “I’ve officiated for many, many years and never had anything like this happen. The media was at my door at my house.”
Police had to be called to get all the prying lenses off their property, and Easley was receiving death threats. A mysterious package even showed up at their house.
“We had a package shipped to our house from Wisconsin that ended up having cheese in it, but we had to have the police come out for that.”
For Easley, a ref with experience officiating only high school and junior college games prior to his NFL turn, refereeing a professional football game was a dream come true.
“I didn’t expect to ever see the field,” said Easley. “I think most people who are out there, they want to do the best job at the highest level of their profession. It was a dream.”
While all the attention after the call might have been a bit of a nightmare, Easley said he still doesn’t regret the call.
“I don’t regret any call I’ve made throughout my officiating career, unless it was absolutely wrong and I kicked a rule or something, but that was just a bizarre play,” said Easley. “The play itself was bizarre, a simultaneous catch like that in the end zone where two guys come down with it. You have to sort it out.”
Easley is willing to live with his call, and that’s the message in his new book, “Making the Call: Living With Your Decisions.”
Lance Easley will be in the Seattle area Aug. 31 for two book signings. The first will be at Lifeway Bible Book Store in Tukwila from noon to 2 p.m. The second signing is at Barnes & Noble in downtown Seattle from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. He’ll also be speaking at Gold Creek Church in Mill Creek on Sept. 1.