TACOMA — Lance Easley has no regrets. He still says it was a touchdown.
Easley, the former NFL replacement ref who made a controversial call on Monday Night Football, was reunited with Seahawks receiver Golden Tate for the first time since the infamous game against Green Bay last September. Both took part in Richard Sherman’s first annual celebrity softball game at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma, Wash.
“Oh yeah, it’s still a touchdown,” Easley said. “You can’t change that. The NFL upheld the rule. It’s been looked at over and over and over again and I think in history, it will come out that people will say ‘Yeah, that was the right call, given the circumstances.’ ”
Said Tate: “It makes me happy. I still think it was a touchdown, too.”
Easley currently resides in Santa Maria, Calif., where he still works in banking full time. He also wrote a book and does a lot of public speaking.
“People like to hear about the bizarre aftermath. I’ve never talked to anyone who’s been through what I’ve been through, so I’ve had to sort it all out on my own,” Easley said.
Easley has also come up with an acronym for how he’s dealt with the fan response: “I say I’m D.E.A.F. to the whole thing. It stands for Decide to stand when something happens, Embrace stress and pressure, Adopt a good attitude and Form a foundation. And that will help anyone get through all the noise that we have to deal with in our daily lives.”
Easley, a former Marine, took part in the event, mainly in part because proceeds were going to help wounded veterans.
“We talked about it a little bit,” Tate said. “He told me how much his life has changed. It sounds like he’s keeping a positive attitude, regardless of all the negativity.”