Blog Entry

Manning, Polian detest new ball-spotting rules

Posted on: August 30, 2010 11:04 am
Edited on: August 30, 2010 11:05 am
Posted by Andy Benoit

Not surprisingly, Peyton Manning and Bill Polian are displeased -- perhaps even downright angry -- with the NFL’s new ball-spotting rule. Because umpires are now lining up in the backfield, it’s taking longer for them to spot the ball. And, after they spot the ball, they must run back to their spot some 10 yards behind the line of scrimmage. Consequently, the quarterback must look to the line judge to get a go-ahead to snap the ball. As we saw at Lambeau Field last Thursday night, this slows Indy’s hurry-up offense. B. Polian (US Presswire)

As usual, Sports Illustrated’s Peter King, in his most recent Monday Morning Quarterback Column, got great insight on the mess. Manning told King, "If we had this rule last year there's no way we catch up in that New England game. We were down, what, 21 points in the fourth quarter? We wouldn't have had enough time to run enough plays to catch up. But forget about that game. Let's chart all the comeback wins where a team runs the hurry-up in the fourth quarter. How many of those games would have ended up the same way -- or would the quarterbacks have had enough time to run enough plays to come back and win?''

Indy’s gripe also pertains to the snap infringement penalty (which they were flagged for twice against Green Bay). "I am dead-set against the penalty,'' Polian, who is on the Competition Committee, said. "It is insane. If I knew it would be this way, I'd have voted against it, and not only that, I'd have crusaded against it.''

It is believed that the NFL will try to fix the timing issues, though VP of officiating, Carl Johnson, doesn’t seem too creative at this point.

"The way the new mechanic of the umpire positioning is, I don't have a resolution to that,'' Johnson told King. "It's going to take a couple extra seconds to spot the ball. There's no way around that. But this is a work in progress. We're aggressively seeking ways to improve the mechanics.''

King bounces around several ideas for what the league can do to remedy the problem. A major obstacle is that the league has already acknowledged that the umpire was moved because of safety concerns. This significantly limits the possibility of simply moving the umpires back to his original spot. After all, if that were to happen, then not only would the league be saying it doesn’t care about the umpire’s safety, but it could also be liable if an umpire were to get seriously injured.

It’s safe to assume that when the apparently hasty decision to relocate the umpire was made, the NFL did not foresee having to deal with so many issues this close to the start of the regular season.

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Since: Apr 7, 2010
Posted on: August 30, 2010 12:11 pm

Manning, Polian detest new ball-spotting rules

I agree they need to do something to help address the hurry-up offense that is entertaining to watch (even if it's being used against your defense), and I'm sure they'll find a way to adjust.

This smacks more of whining that the Colts can't get cheap "12 men on the field" penalties as easily (2nd only in lameness to the defensive penalties for roughing the passer that I'll own up are partly because of my QB's-Tom Brady-injury two seasons ago).

Since: Aug 30, 2010
Posted on: August 30, 2010 12:08 pm

Manning, Polian detest new ball-spotting rules

Easy Solution - Let the center spot the ball... the linesmen can keep an eye on him and penalize him for any misalignments... heck, the center almost always moves the ball forward a little bit anyway whenever he hikes it... allowing the center to mark the ball gives the umpire the extra time needed to get him in a safe position and gives the offensive team a better chance to manage the clock when they are in their hurry-up offense... All the umpire will be required to do between plays is to collect the ball after each play and hand it to the center. I think this could be done the whole game but at least in the last two minutes of each half.

Since: Mar 20, 2009
Posted on: August 30, 2010 11:58 am

Manning, Polian detest new ball-spotting rules

Aww cry me a river Peyton. Seriously though, put a frikkin helmet on the ref and switch it back. Ridiculous.

Since: Jul 21, 2008
Posted on: August 30, 2010 11:48 am

Let the People Speak

Or in this case let the umpires speak.

This decision like so many other decisions in this country was made without consulting the people who it matters most.

In my opinion ask the umpires on the field what they think.  Do they want to be in the old position, or do  they want to be in the new position.  If they feel their in harms way they will say so and then I, and a guy like Peyton will understand. 

Want to know what I bet????  I bet 9 out of 10 umps on the fiield dont give a rats ass where they are at!  They just want to call the game.  And they probably want to call the game like its been being called.

I suppose I could be wrong?  But I dont think it was the umps who made this decision.  This was the NFL doing something they do every year, which is changing rules.  Half of the rule changes usually make sense and the other half always seem so experimental.  I would say this one classifies as experimental.

Since: Jul 18, 2007
Posted on: August 30, 2010 11:43 am

Manning, Polian detest new ball-spotting rules

Sounds like a built in excuse for why Peyton will fail yet again to win the Superbowl with a superior team. What did the umpire have to do with Peyton throwing a Superbowl ending pick 6?

The bottom line: Life ain't fair. Once you realize that there are two options:

1. Take it like a Man, realize the NFL is not only trying to protect its refs from injury, but also eliminating the chances of screening the defensive player on a quick slant - a play that every NFL team runs in hopes the Ump will get in the way.


2. Whine and cry like a Woman about how life's not fair then throw temper tantrums. Funny that Manning and Polians crying about the Patriots DB's being too physical led to the special emphasis on illegal contact making it 5 and a 1st down if anyone even sneezes on Reggie Wayne. Now a rule goes the other way, and it's not fair.

Let me be the first to Congratulate you on 13 more REGULAR SEASON wins in 2010 with nothing to show for it but a bottom 5 pick in the 2011 NFL Draft.  

Since: Feb 8, 2007
Posted on: August 30, 2010 11:38 am

Manning, Polian detest new ball-spotting rules

Sorry....I go against every offense with this new ruling.  It happens to make the game safer for refs and players, but it also cut out those crossing pick routes that were starting to  hamper the defense by running in front or slightly behind that ref.  It cut out that route to make life more balanced in a league that is clearly moving towards "Madden Rookie Level" football.

I still think this is clearly about keeping both players and refs healthy.  In my opinion, safety still trumps the game.  Especially with concussions being linked to ALS, safety will be any "hurry up" issue that the Colts whinnning will ever trump.

Since: Oct 17, 2006
Posted on: August 30, 2010 11:26 am

Manning, Polian detest new ball-spotting rules

It’s safe to assume that when the apparently hasty decision to relocate the umpire was made, the NFL did not foresee having to deal with so many issues this close to the start of the regular season.You'd think that a a multi-billion dollar business like the NFL would chart every PRO and CON on the rule changes. This not only sucks for the Colts, but it will throw a wrench into any team that runs that hurry up offense later in the 4th quarter and is out of time-outs.

This is going to kill many games that are a staple of why the NFL is so great and it is those comebacks.

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