NFL Proposes Rule Changes, Only Few Make Sense

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The NFL Owners’ Meetings begin this week and among the things that will be discussed are rule changes. Why the league’s brain trust feels compelled to make material changes to a game that is wildly popular is in some ways unconscionable and in other ways simply arrogant.

But be that as it may, they’ll convene this week and discuss 13 different proposed changes to the game. Maybe they should spend their collective time discussing ways to improve the fan experience at the game such as NASA powered wifi, free access to games and highlights from around the league on demand from smartphones, and improved queuing into that stadium and rest rooms to name a few.

But that’s just me…maybe.

Anyway here are the FACTS presented as the proposed rule changes along with my OPINION on the proposed changes.

And by all means, we welcome yours…

FACT: Proposal No. 1 KICKOFFS ~ Move the kickoff to the 40-yard line for safety and historic consistency reasons.

OPINION: If the owners pass this, please stop wasting our time and just put the ball on the 20. Then ask Jacoby Jones for a refund. Fans who like the “consistent” excitement of a kick return, refer to the historical videos.

FACT: Proposal No. 2 REPLAY PERSONAL FOULS ~ Would expand instant replay to include personal foul penalties.

OPINION: Another way to slow down and over-officiate an already over-officiated game. Here’s an idea, how about the officials just call what they see, not what they think they’ve seen?

FACT: Proposal No. 3 PRESEASON OVERTIME ~ Would eliminate overtime periods in preseason games for player safety reasons.

OPINION: Agreed, oh and fan boredom reasons. But then again shouldn’t we consider if such a move is politically correct? Insomniacs might object.

FACT: Proposal No. 4 HEIGHTEN GOAL POSTS ~ Would extend the goal posts an additional five feet above the cross bar, making it easier for officials to determine whether kicks are good.

OPINION: Seems like a reasonable suggestion and I’m glad they weren’t that tall back in 2012 when Justin Tucker hit the walkoff against the Patriots. I do feel sorry for the guy who climbs those poles and puts the wind ribbon on top ;-)

FACT: Proposal No. 5 LONGER EXTRA POINTS ~ Would move the line of scrimmage for extra points to the defensive team’s 25-yard line, making it a 43-yard attempt. This is to make the extra point more competitive.

OPINION: If it ain’t broke… However, that said, it could increase the frequency of 2-point attempts and level the playing field for random numbers selected during Super Bowl block pools. What about the dropkick?

FACT: Proposal No. 6 BOUNDARY LINE CAMERAS: Would put stationary cameras on all boundary lines – the sideline, end line and end zone – to supplement the TV cameras.

OPINION: This proposal was suggested by the Patriots (true story) because more cameras means more opportunities for spying (possibly a true story).

FACT: Proposal No. 7 COACHES CHALLENGES ~ Would permit a coach to challenge any official’s decision, except scoring plays.

OPINION: Can you challenge “malice in the heart”? On whole a good move. How many times have we seen officials being obviously wrong only to find out that it was not a reviewable call? It might curtail those famous M&T Bank Stadium chants.

FACT: Proposal No. 8 ROLL UP PROTECTION: Would add a penalty for “rolling up” on the side of a defender. Currently, a blocker cannot go low at the back of the legs of a defender. This would further extend that to include the side.

OPINION: Is two-hand touch that far away?

FACT: Proposal No. 9 REFEREE CONSULTATION ~ Would allow the referee to consult with members of the NFL officiating department in New York during replay reviews.

OPINION: No brainer but I’m glad I’m not in the hood business, as in “going under the hood.”

FACT: Proposal No. 10 REPLAY FUMBLE RECOVERIES ~ Would allow plays where the ball is in the field of play and there is a clear recovery to be reviewed and potentially overturned. Currently, when a ball is ruled dead, it is not reviewable.

OPINION: Well it’s about time!

FACT: Proposal No. 11 CLOCK STOPPAGE: Would eliminate the stoppage of the clock on a sack at any point of the game.

OPINION: If your QB gets knocked into never, never land I’m thinking the guy has earned a few seconds of our precious time to shake out the cobwebs. Seriously, I can’t ever recall screaming bowling alley words at the TV because the officials stop the clock for Ben Roethlisberger when Haloti Ngata turned his nose into an elbow noodle.

FACT: Proposal No. 12 PASS INTERFERENCE MODIFICATION ~ Would allow for pass interference to be called even if the foul occurs within 1 yard of the line of scrimmage.

OPINION: This one is completely ridiculous. If anything they should penalize less for pass interference. Ticky-tack penalties 40-yards downfield and flagged as a spot foul, should simply be a 10-yard penalty and an automatic first down. Blatant P.I.’s only should be spot fouls.

FACT: Proposal No. 13 PENALTY ENFORCEMENT ~ Would make all defensive fouls behind the line of scrimmage enforced from the previous spot rather than the end of the run or the spot of the foul.

OPINION: Don’t they have something better to talk about than this? Like when a head coach intentionally impedes the progress of a kick returner on his way to the end zone?

Which of the rule changes do you support? (Pick up to 6)
Total voters: 303
Move Kickoff to 40 Yard Line (0%)
Replay Personal Fouls (7%)
Eliminate Preseason Overtime (16%)
Heighten Goal Posts (13%)
43-yard PATs (6%)
Boundary Line Cameras (9%)
Coaches Can Challenge all calls (13%)
No Roll Blocks from the side (3%)
Centrally Located Review Booth (12%)
Fumble Recovery Review (15%)
Eliminate Clock Stoppage after sacks (4%)
Pass Interference Modification (1%)
Penalty Enforcement from previous spot (1%)
This poll has completed. Thank you for voting.

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About Tony Lombardi

Tony Lombardi
Tony is 24x7 Networks, LLC's founder (the parent of EutawStreetReport.com and RussellStreetReport.com) His work has been featured on various sports websites and he is a regular guest on 105.7 The Fan. A diehard Fab Four fan, Tony is a frustrated musician who thinks beating on the steering wheel is akin...more

10 Raves on “NFL Proposes Rule Changes, Only Few Make Sense

  1. JWS on said:

    TL ,Very nicely covered and with something I did know you had, a sense of Humor.I would like owners to pass a self governing rule on who can suggest rule changes. Teamsare adding more and more of their with far too many silly changes. The longer extra point will cause more injuries than accomplish anything worthwhile. Why? Becasue when teams miss 43 yard extra points and they will, more 2 point conversions will be attempted that has a greater chance for contact on the play and cause more injuries. It may well pass and then let’s se waht happens on those two point tries. Ozzie and teh Ravens best off season signings ever!

  2. Steve on said:

    Disagree on your opinion of eliminating PI. That would increase fouls, if a player sees a receiver about to catch a TD pass he can just push him over and take the 10yd penalty. Sure PI is tough at times, but a necessary evil to keep defenders in check

    • Tony LombardiTony Lombardi on said:

      Steve you are misunderstanding my intent. It’s the ticky tack fouls that get the 10-yard penalty. The situation your described would remain (and deservedly so) a spot foul.

  3. Smitty on said:

    Most of these are stupid,

    ” No. 8 ROLL UP PROTECTION: Would add a penalty for “rolling up” on the side of a defender. Currently, a blocker cannot go low at the back of the legs of a defender. This would further extend that to include the side.
    OPINION: Is two-hand touch that far away?”

    But based on your reaction to this I can tell you never played Football at the collegiate level. Or at least not on the defensive line like some of us. Getting cut from all angles and having ur legs rolled is beyond dangerous. If you haven’t felt it you wont understand.

    any block below the waste at any point on the field is A) cowardly and B) Dangerous to the defense….but no one cares about the defense …. see #12

  4. Anonymous on said:

    TL,

    FACT: Proposal No. 13 PENALTY ENFORCEMENT ~ Would make all defensive fouls behind the line of scrimmage enforced from the previous spot rather than the end of the run or the spot of the foul.

    OPINION: Don’t they have something better to talk about than this? Like when a head coach intentionally impedes the progress of a kick returner on his way to the end zone?

    I thought you would be all for this wouldn’t this mean instead of getting 15 yds added to the run or pass they get the 15 yds from the line of scrimmage. Unless I am understanding it wrong which is possible.

    • Tony LombardiTony Lombardi on said:

      What happens if there’s a tripping penalty or facemasking near the end of a 15 yard run? The way I read that is that there’s then no incentive not to commit the foul if the foul is marked from the line of scrimmage instead of the spot to the foul.

  5. dave on said:

    ” I do feel sorry for the guy who climbs those poles and puts the wind ribbon on top.” I applied for the job using your name, TL. You’re welcome!!

    Previous to this i only felt sorry for the guy who had to collect the balm FROM the tiger.

  6. Mike Z on said:

    No 11…..I agree with this one. IMO, if the offense can not stop the sack, why should they be rewarded with extra time to recover before the next play.

  7. JerryB on said:

    Here’s a novel idea; if you’re so obsessed with head injuries, how ’bout eliminating congratulatory head-butts! Nah, that would make too much sense……

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