Comparative Procedure on a Sunday Afternoon: Instant Replay in the NFL as a Process of Appellate Review

35 Pages Posted: 26 Aug 2009 Last revised: 15 Dec 2009

Chad M. Oldfather

Marquette University - Law School

Matthew M. Fernholz

Marquette University - Law School

Date Written: August 25, 2009

Abstract

During his confirmation hearings, Chief Justice John Roberts famously likened the judicial role to that of a baseball umpire. The increased prevalence of video evidence makes it likely that judges will find another sporting analogue for their role – that of the instant replay official in the NFL. (Indeed, many have already done so.) This Essay explores the analogy. In so doing it seeks not only to consider its appropriateness in a narrow sense (much as many commentators considered the appropriateness of the Chief Justice’s analogy), but also to conduct something of a comparative analysis and thereby to use it as a vehicle for illustrating some general characteristics of a process of decisional review.

Keywords: instant replay, NFL, national football league, appellate, standard of review

JEL Classification: K4, K40, K41

Suggested Citation

Oldfather, Chad M. and Fernholz, Matthew M., Comparative Procedure on a Sunday Afternoon: Instant Replay in the NFL as a Process of Appellate Review (August 25, 2009). Indiana Law Review, Vol. 43, p. 45, 2009; Marquette Law School Legal Studies Paper No. 09-32. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1461427

Chad M. Oldfather (Contact Author)

Marquette University - Law School ( email )

Eckstein Hall
P.O. Box 1881
Milwaukee, WI 53201
United States
414.288.8031 (Phone)

Matthew M. Fernholz

Marquette University - Law School ( email )

Eckstein Hall
P.O. Box 1881
Milwaukee, WI 53201
United States

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