The 2018 NFL season will be remembered for many things. Fans will also look back on the regular season for the officiating, especially during a year when there seemed to be more flags than amazing plays.
According to Rick Gosselin, the NFL officiating crew set a league record with 3,447 penalties called during the 2018 regular season:
NFL crews assessed a record 3,447 penalties in 2018. First-year referees Shawn Hochuli and Shawn Smith and their crews finished 1-2 in penalties with the Hochuli crew assessing 253 and the Smith crew 228.
— Rick Gosselin (@RickGosselin9) January 1, 2019
Many of this is due to the changing of the rules that are more favorable to offensive players, particularly quarterbacks. Everyone remembers the situation involving Clay Matthews, who seemed to have been called for a penalty every time he touched the quarterback.
The league office has a problem it desperately needs to address.