How To Be A NFL Referee: The Ultimate Guide

A comprehensive guide on how to become an NFL referee, from someone who’s done it.


One of the most popular American sports is Football. Played by two teams of eleven players, football is a physical and demanding sport that requires split-second decisions by the officials. The officials, or referees, are in charge of making sure the game is fair and played within the rules. If you are interested in becoming a NFL referee, this guide will give you all the information you need to get started.

In order to become a NFL referee, there are a few requirements you must meet. Firstly, you must be at least 18 years old. Secondly, you must have a high school diploma or equivalent. Finally, you must complete the NFL Officials Training Program, which is a four-week long training program that covers all aspects of officiating football games.

Once you have met all the requirements and completed the training program, you will then be able to apply for a position as a NFL referee. The hiring process for NFL referees is very competitive, so it is important to make sure your application is as strong as possible. Once you have been hired as a NFL referee, you will be responsible for officiating games throughout the season.

If you are interested in becoming a NFL referee, then follow this guide to get started on your journey!

What Does It Take To Be A NFL Referee?

In order to become a NFL referee, you must have a passion for the game of football. You must also be able to stay calm under pressure and have excellent communication skills. NFL referees must be able to make quick decisions and be able to keep up with the fast pace of the game. If you think you have what it takes to become a NFL referee, read on for more information.

Physical requirements

In order to become a NFL referee, you must meet the minimum physical requirements. These include being at least 21 years old, having an accredited college degree, and passing a physical examination. You must also have excellent vision and hearing, and be able to run 50 yards in under 14 seconds.

Mental requirements

In order to be a successful NFL referee, it is important to have excellent mental stamina and concentration. This is a demanding job that requires split-second decision making. There is no room for error. You must also be able to handle the pressure of working in front of a large crowd of people, often in a hostile environment.

How To Become A NFL Referee

Becoming an NFL referee is not an easy task. There are a lot of things that you need to know and do in order to become one. However, it is not impossible. In this guide, we will go over everything that you need to know in order to become an NFL referee.

Steps to take

In order to become an NFL referee, there are several steps that must be taken. First, you must have a passion for the game of football and a willingness to learn the rules of the game. Next, you must be able to communicate well with other officials and have a strong understanding of the game. Finally, you must be able to make quick decisions and remain impartial at all times.


You must attend a training camp before every season. At the camp, you will receive updates on league rules changes, brush up on your knowledge of the rules, and be evaluated by the supervisors. You will also officiate preseason games.

What Happens Once You Become A NFL Referee?

Congratulations on your new position as a NFL referee! You have worked hard to get to this point and we are excited to have you on board. In this guide, we will cover everything you need to know about what happens once you become a NFL referee. We will discuss the training you will need to undergo, the expectations of the job, and the salary you can expect to earn.

The NFL Referee Association

The National Football League Referee Association (NFLRA) is the labor union that represents NFL referees. It was formed in 1974, and negotiated the first collective bargaining agreement for NFL referees in 1977. The current collective bargaining agreement between the NFL and the NFLRA was ratified in 2012 and runs through May 31, 2021.

Under the terms of the CBA, NFL referees are part-time employees of the League, and are paid an average of $205,000 per year. NFL referees also receive a pension plan from the League, and are eligible for health insurance and other benefits.

In order to become an NFL referee, you must first be a member of the NFLRA. There are two ways to become a member:

1) You can be appointed by the Commissioner of the NFL; or
2) You can be elected by a vote of active members of the Association.

To be eligible to be elected by the membership, you must have served as a referee in either:
-a collegiate conference that is currently assigned to Division I-A or I-AA by the NCAA; or
-a professional league that uses officials who meet or exceed the experience requirements for Division I-A conferences as determined by the NCAA (e.g., Arena Football League, Canadian Football League).
Candidates for election must also be recommended by a member of their local chapter’s Board of Governors.

The NFL Rulebook

Once you become a referee, you will be given a copy of the NFL rulebook. The NFL rulebook is constantly being updated and tweaked, so it is important that you stay up to date on the latest changes. You will be responsible for knowing all of the rules inside and out.

In addition to the NFL rulebook, there are other resources that you can use to help you learn the rules. The NFL publishes an annual Rulebook and Casebook, which contains summaries of rule changes and officiating mechanics, as well as detailed case studies of plays that illustrate correct officiating techniques. You can also find helpful information on the NFL Officiating website, which includes videos, officiating clinics, and practice tests.


With these few tips, you will be on your way to becoming a certified NFL referee. The position may seem like a thankless job, but it is truly one of the most important roles in the game. Not only do you have to know all the rules, but you have to be able to keep a level head and make calm, unbiased decisions. It takes a special person to be a referee, but if you have what it takes, it can be a very rewarding experience.

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