OMG this is F*cking cool- You go GIRL!
Of course, Sarah isn't new. The NFL hired her back in 2015. She was the league's first full-time female official . . . and before that she was the first woman to officiate a major college football game. This Sunday at Gillette she will be the 'Down Judge,' which is just one step under the Head Referee and Umpire. Down judges manage the chains, set the line of scrimmage, mark the spot where the play ends, and make line-of-scrimmage calls like false starts and offside.
Sarah was promoted to Down Judge last season. She previously served as a 'Line Judge.'
Interesting Fact: The Down Judge was previously called the Head Linesman. The NFL's officiating director says it was changed in 2017 to be gender neutral . . . but it wasn't directly because of Sarah. He said they'd decided on making the change BEFORE she was promoted.
Although interestingly, women once again are still just on the sidelines (literally and figuratively ie: broadcasters too)...still THIS is great, keep trailblazing ladies. (check out how bad ass she is BELOW).
Sarah Thomas will become 1st female official in @NFL playoff history Sunday for @Chargers vs. @Patriots ???????? ➡️ https://t.co/mqhglJ2ioJ