After an illustrious 15-year career, long-time NFL referee Gene Steratore is calling it quits.
NFL referee Gene Steratore notified Al Riveron, the NFL’s Vice President of officiating, Friday morning that he is hanging up his … whistle?
Across 15 years in the league, 12 as a referee, Steratore became one of the most well-known and revered refs ever.
With many memorable calls, 12 playoff games and Super Bowl LII, Steratore will be remembered for many years to come.
He joins Terry McAuley, Jeff Triplette and Ed Hochuli, bringing to four the number of veteran referees that have retired this offseason.
There are some legendary names on that list, and the NFL officiating crews will look a lot different next season. Hopefully the new crews will be able to fill the big shoes that these guys leave behind.
One of the most memorable Steratore moments came last season when he utilized an index card to make a first-down decision in a game between the Oakland Raiders and Dallas Cowboys. Surely, most Raiders fans will not be sad when they see the news.
Who knows, maybe he handed in his retirement notice on an index card just for fun.
In addition, Steratore officiated the Super Bowl last season. According to most, he did a terrific job managing the biggest game of the year, but some people still question how the Patriots were penalized so few times, regardless of the loss.
Consistency was the calling card (no pun intended) of Steratore’s career, it will be missed. Steratore also referees college basketball and it is unknown whether he will continue those duties.
Here’s to Steratore and his great career, all the best in future endeavors. The NFL lost a lot of great officials this offseason, hopefully it won’t come back to haunt them. Regardless, Steratore’s legacy will last for a long time.