Every off season the NFL's Competition Committee meets up to discuss changing rules for the sport we all know and love. Some past changes include adding the 2-point conversion, eliminating helmet to helmet contact, and moving kickoffs up. Some proposals are done with safety in mind, other's are done to create an aura of fairness, while others are done for no discernible reason and just seem to leave one scratching their head.
There was a conference call with the Competition Committee yesterday, and if you'd like you can check out the complete transcript right here.
Our sister site, Acme Packing Company, was kind enough to list out the rule change proposals.
- Move kickoffs to 40-yard line (proposed by Washington)
- Make personal foul penalties reviewable (Washington)
- No overtime in preseason games (Washington)
- Extend goalposts five feet higher (Patriots)
- Move PAT line of scrimmage to 25-yard line (Patriots)
- Add cameras to goal lines to assist with instant replay (Patriots)
- Allow any referee's decision to be reviewable (Patriots)
- Include blocks from the side in "roll-up" block personal foul penalties (proposed by Committee)
- Allow replay communications between officials to include league representative at league office (Committee)
- Make the recovery of a loose ball a reviewable play and reorganize the replay section of the rules (Committee)
- Allow clock to run when quarterback is sacked at all times (Committee)
- Remove one-yard interference zone and enforce pass interference anywhere beyond line of scrimmage (Committee)
- Simplify penalty yardage enforcement on certain plays including change of possession (Committee)
Do any of those catch your eye?
Some of the replay proposals are just common sense and should pass.
Moving the kickoff to the 40 is a waste of time. Most kickers are getting the ball into the end zone as it is, so you give them 5 more yards to play with and I can see kick returns happening on only about a quarter of all kicks.
There were also some bylaw proposal changes and some of these seem likely to pass.
- Raise the active list for game day from 46 to 49 for games played on days other than Sunday or Monday, except opening weekend. (Proposed by Washington)
- Increase the practice squad from 8 to 10. (Washington)
- Clubs would be allowed to trade players prior to the start of the league year. (Washington)
- Eliminate the roster cut down to 75 and have just one cut down to 53. (Washington)
- More than one player would be able to return to the active list from injured reserve during the season. (Washington)
- Each club would be permitted to time and test, at its facility, 10 players who attended the Combine and permit clubs to attend any timing or testing at another club's facility that involves three or more draft-eligible players. (Philadelphia)
- Change the time for roster reduction to 53 after the fourth preseason game to Saturday at 4:00 PM Eastern. (Committee)
The final proposal was made by the Indianapolis Colts, and it would "permit the home team, with a retractable roof [or wall], to open the closed roof and/or wall at halftime."
I've long thought that the NFL should be much more flexible with their injured reserve system. Adding a 4 game IR designation makes sense to me. That coupled with the increased roster and practice squad proposal would be a good start.
One thing I've never understood, is why not just allow all 53 players dress on game day? I'm sure there's a reason out there somewhere, but I don't see the point in keeping any of your players in street clothes.
Do any of these bylaw changes makes sense to you?
There was also a Q&A session, and here are a few highlights from that.
- Playoff expansion is still on the table.
- The unsportsmanlike conduct rule that is already in place should cover racial slurs if used in an abusive manner.
- Chicago is not on the list to bid for the next available Super Bowl.
- Shrinking the goal posts have been discussed.
Now it's your turn to sound off, do any of these changes stand out to you?