I doubt many of us would argue that the National Football League is not the most exciting and most compelling sports viewing on a week-in and week-out basis. Fans love the product on the field and that's one of the main reasons that is continually the most popular American sport.
It is of course not without its issues. The league has been battling the lingering concussion issue as well as suffering from PR hits like Aaron Hernandez, Michael Vick and other never-do-well players. But the game trucks on and this fall will start to cash in on its new TV revenue deal which will net it billions in profits.
So why, then, does commissioner Roger Goodell and the league bigwigs continue to prod and poke at bringing changes to the game which are unnecessary?
Just this week it has been brought up that the league may do away with extra points. Now I'm not entirely against it because, as Kev wrote earlier this week, it is most certainly a play that seems a sure-thing and getting rid of it could speed up the game, but is that truly necessary? Is there something fundamentally wrong with the play? No, it's fine just the way it is.
I have less a problem with the removal of the extra point but that also depends on what they bring in to replace it.
This brings me to one of my points. Lately when the NFL has messed with convention it hasn't done well in the do-over. I felt that it was time for the league to overhaul the NFL's overtime rules but the NFL didn't quite go far enough. There is still a way for a one-possession overtime and teams can still play conservative football and settle for a field goal and win.
Then the NFL wanted to mess with the formula for the Super Bowl and let a cold weather city host it. Now there are daily updates about how nearly everyone involved in the planning are sweating it out since weather conditions could be less-than-ideal.
Other things the league has discussed are talking about expanding the playoff field and extending the regular season to 18 games. Also, in the past there has been talk of eliminating the kickoff.
Why? Why must the league do all these things? There was nothing wrong with the way it is! Some of it is in the financial interests of the teams, and I'm not naive enough to think it's not, but I just feel if the NFL is so successful the way it is, why try to fix it?
The NFL playoffs are incredibly exciting the way they are. The Wild Card games were absorbing, with three of the four decided by three or less points, but the next teams who would have made the playoffs in an expanded format would have been the Arizona Cardinals and the Miami Dolphins. Those teams weren't terrible and, while the Cardinals would have been intriguing, the Dolphins really didn't inspire a lot of excitement in me as a football fan.
And would you really have wanted to watch the Bears' defense for two more games? No way.
These proposals along with the rule changes, like the kickoffs and the extra points, just seem unnecessary and could be messing with an already winning formula.
Please Mr. Goodell, quit messing with our game. It's fine the way it is.
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