The NFL pulled replacement official Brian Stropolo from Sunday’s Saints-Panthers game after ESPN made the league aware Stopolo is a Saints fan.
Stropolo traveled with the crew and was going to be the side judge for Sunday’s game. On his Facebook page, he had pictures of himself in Saints gear tailgating at a preseason game in August and other photos of himself in Saints clothing. The league pulled Stropolo from his assignment on Sunday morning and replaced him with an alternate.
NFL executive vice president of football operations Ray Anderson told NFL.com that the league, “took the safe and appropriate measures” by removing him, but the NFL did not confirm that Stropolo’s social media account was the reason for his removal.
In another potential conflict of interest story involving replacement officials, NFL Network’s Albert Breer reported that Jeff Sadorus, who worked last week’s Seahawks-Cardinals game, had officiated Seahawks regular-season practices for the past three years and received paychecks from the team.
NFL officials are only allowed to work training-camp practices and they receive payments from the league, not teams.