NFL creates its own crisis, then receives applause

By Danny O'Neil, The Seattle Times Published: September 30, 2012

SEATTLE — The standing ovation demonstrated the NFL's power even in defeat.

The league is so popular that even its officials get cheered. At least they did Thursday night in Baltimore, which was the first game after the lockout of the regular on-field officials ended. Referee Gene Steratore's crew was greeted with a loud ovation upon its return to work.

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