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Mike Pereira is a former Vice President of Officiating (formerly Senior Director of Officiating) for the National Football League (NFL). He first took over the position in 2001, succeeding Jerry Seeman. He was also a game official in the NFL for two seasons (1996 and 1997) as a side judge on the officiating crew headed by referee Mike Carey. He wore uniform number 77, which is now worn by side judge-turned-two-time Super Bowl referee Terry McAulay.
Pereira appeared on the NFL Network show, NFL Total Access, during the "Official Review" segment, to discuss key calls made during the previous week's games with host Rich Eisen every Wednesday during the season.
In June 2010, it was announced that Pereira would be joining Fox Sports to serve as a rules analyst for the network's college and NFL coverage. He began a column on FoxSports.com and started to provide commentary during Fox Sports football telecasts. In 2012, Sports Illustrated named Pereria as one of the NFL's most indispensable broadcasting talents, saying that "Viewers have longed for broadcasters to provide accurate explanations from the NFL's byzantine rule book, and Pereira, thankfully, has taken the burden off ex-jocks and announcers". Michael Hiestand of USA Today wrote that "after Fox's groundbreaking move to put the ex-NFL vice president of officiating on-air, Pereira proved to be a candid voice — not a shill for the almighty NFL". However, Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times wrote that "Pereira has assumed the role of the overzealous defense attorney ... his appearances generally conclude with him concluding that the referees have gotten it right yet again ... Analyst is the title that FOX hangs on Pereira, but advocate is more appropriate".
Pereira also sparked coverage by others in the media when he criticized the commentary of Monday Night Football announcer Jon Gruden, calling him out as a "blowhard ... who spouts off when he doesn’t know what he’s talking about". Pereira specifically felt that Gruden "butchered" the analysis of two defenseless receiver plays during the telecast of an Atlanta Falcons-New Orleans Saints game. However, Doug Farrar of Yahoo! Sports thought that Pereira should have instead taken the higher road, and Fox should "lay down the law to Pereira [and] needs to be told to put the agendas away".
From February to June 2011, Pereira was the Pac-10's interim coordinator of officiating, charged with implementing changes in the conference's officiating program. Current Pac-12 coordinator of officiating Tony Corrente retained Pereira on his staff as a consultant through the Pac-12's 2011-2012 football season.
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