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Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank on Super Bowl LIII, missed call in Saints-Rams game

As Atlanta prepares for the Super Bowl LIII matchup between the Los Angeles Rams and the New England Patriots, Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank said he's not too worried about whether the partial government shutdown will impact security on the big day.

"All the funding for the event has been in place for a couple years now, so we have no concerns about that. We are a little concerned about TSA, but we were assured by them that they are going to move 120 additional officers to Atlanta. So I think the experience will be fine," Blank told "CBS This Morning" co-host Norah O'Donnell.

The co-founder of Home Depot said his team is looking forward to hosting the event at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

"It's an interesting matchup: you have a young quarterback against what most people would agree is probably the best quarterback to ever play the game. You have an older coach that is one of the best coaches to ever coach against a younger coach who has performed beautifully and led his team," Blank said.

Asked about the controversy surrounding a missed pass interference call at Sunday's NFC Championship Game that helped the Rams move on to the Super Bowl and left the New Orleans Saints and their fans fuming, Blank said it's an issue that the NFL and its competition committee will review.

"Whether or not there will be a change I'm not sure," Blank said. "If I was a Saints fan, I would feel just the way Gayle Benson, their owner, expressed. But I know the officials do a great job for us throughout the year. You have 22 really big men moving really quickly and it's easy to miss some things and there's a lot of opportunities during the game to actually win the game and in this case the Saints were unable to do it."

Benson released a statement Monday saying, in part, "No team should ever be denied the opportunity to reach the title game (or simply win a game) based on the actions, or inactions, of those charged with creating a fair and equitable playing field. As is clear to all who watched the game, it is undeniable that our team and fans were unfairly deprived of that opportunity yesterday."

There have also been calls to make instant replay available for pass interference penalties, but Blank said the referee didn't throw a flag in the no-call on Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman and Saints wide-receiver Tommylee Lewis, so it wouldn't be eligible for replay anyway.

"So you'd be calling for replay on something that wasn't acknowledged as a foul at the time. So the committee will look at all that. The owners take the game really seriously. As Gayle suggested, the integrity and transparency is critical to the NFL and so we'll make sure we do the right thing for all the right reasons going forward," Blank said.

The businessman also said Atlanta is a "changed city" since 2000, the last time they hosted a Super Bowl showdown. Blank pointed to how the Mercedes-Benz Stadium, situated near some of the city's poorest neighborhoods, is helping to revitalize the area.

"So we made a major difference with many partners — probably one of the programs to give you an example is called Westside Works. We've trained and placed over 690 families. And they — 90 percent of them still have their jobs and they brought back close to $19 million of earned income back into those communities," Blank said. "Public education is better, crime is down 43 percent. I mean, across the board, it's returning its great moments which were in the '70s, and I look forward to making that commitment and staying with it — and many of our partners do as well."

Watch Super Bowl LIII and all the pregame festivities Sunday, Feb. 3, 2019 on CBS. 

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