(Gray News) – One fan’s loss is another fan’s marketing opportunity.
A couple of vision centers are offering NFL referees free eye exams following the NFC Championship game in New Orleans.
The Saints lost to the Los Angeles Rams in overtime after a controversial non-call by officials near the end of regulation.
“After having time to consider things we will GLADLY provide no cost eye exams to all NFL officials prior to next season to prevent the atrocity that occurred ...” Louisiana Family Eyecare posted on Facebook. “We would hate for someone else to feel our pain.”
Another vision center in College Station, TX, made a similar offer.
“In light of the atrocious lack of calls during the New Orleans Saints game we would like to extend free eye exams and glasses to any NFL referee in need,” Crystal Vision Center’s tweet said. “You know who you are.”
The controversy came with just under two minutes left in the game.
Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman knocked down Saints receiver Tommylee Lewis on an incomplete pass.
It appears refs could have called pass interference and helmet-to-helmet contact but didn’t.
“I don’t know if there was ever a more obvious pass interference call," Saints head coach Sean Payton said.
Had pass interference been called, the Saints would likely have let time wind down before kicking a field goal, making it extremely difficult for Los Angeles to mount a comeback in the final seconds.
Instead, the Saints had to kick with plenty of time left for the Rams to work their way down the field for their own field goal and send the game to overtime, where they won 26 to 23.