After making history in 2015 by becoming the first full-time female official in NFL history, Sarah Thomas will become the first female referee to officiate a playoff game. Sunday she will take the field for the New England Patriots-Los Angeles Chargers AFC Divisional Round game at Gillette Stadium.
Sarah Thomas and Terri Valentini will become the first women in NFL history to officiate a playoff game this weekend.https://t.co/srZ0w7aFMo
— Ryan Young (@RyanYoung44) January 8, 2019
Back in 2017, Thomas was an alternate for the Atlanta Falcons-Los Angeles Rams’ wild-card game but never took the field. She’s spent the last two seasons as a down judge, before previously working as a line judge. Thomas is in her fourth season as an NFL official.
And in another move for equality, Terri Valentini, the NFL’s first female instant replay official, is scheduled to work the Indianapolis Colts-Kansas City Chiefs Divisional matchup on Saturday in Kansas City.
The moves come on the heels of the of the NBA announcing that referees Ashley Moyer-Gleich and Natalie Sago would be promoted to full-time status back in November, becoming the fourth and fifth women in league history to reach that level.
It’s nice to see the NFL do something progressive. Hopefully, Thomas and Valentini will be the trailblazers for more future female NFL officials.