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Mike Pereira On Felger & Mazz: Spygate Ruined My Relationship With Belichick

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Former NFL VP of Officiating Mike Pereira and current Fox Sports analyst. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

Former NFL VP of Officiating Mike Pereira and current Fox Sports analyst. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

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BOSTON (CBS) – Fox Sports analyst Mike Pereira was Michael Felger and Tony Massarotti’s first guest on Radio Row Tuesday afternoon, and he began the interview reiterating his thoughts on the Wes Welker hit on Aqib Talib that knocked him out of the game.

Despite what his old friend Bill Belichick thought about the play, Pereira states that it was in fact a legal hit and the commotion that ensued afterwards was much ado about nothing.

This segued into a conversation about his relationship with the New England coach, and how a certain videotaping scandal forever damaged it.

“I have always had a tremendous amount of respect for Bill. He was one of my favorites and we conversed regularly until Spygate, and then I was part of the guilty party it seemed and our conversations ceased.”

“The video was in our department, and they looked at it in our department. It just kind of ended the relationship and we didn’t talk much after that unless we saw each other at the owners meetings.”

Pereira went on to tell a funny story about an encounter he had with Belichick post-Spygate at [former Giants co-owner] Wellington Mara’s funeral services, where Bill empathized with Pereira and other referees about how tough their job is.

Michael Felger’s biggest gripe with the NFL is that it’s over-officiated. He’s gone on record in the past saying defensive pass interference has ruined the league, and too much time is spent trying to get every little aspect correct.

Being the former NFL VP of Officiating, Pereira agrees with that sentiment and thinks it has gotten “out of control.”

Pereira’s plan to fix this problem is transitioning to full time referees – not umpires or linesmen, but full time head referees. The officials with the white hats need to be full time so they can properly teach their crew how to call an NFL game.

Listen below for the full discussion:

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