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NFL coaches appear to be a bit skeptical of the changes that are coming to kickoffs this upcoming season. The league's owners recently signed off on a one-year trial for new fair-catch rules. Under the new rules, kick returners can signal for a fair catch anywhere inside their own 25-yard line and it will result in a touchback that will start the ensuing possession at the 25. 

"My thing is, where does it stop, right?" Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said Wednesday. "We'll see how this goes. You don't want to take too many pieces away and you'll be playing flag football."

On top of Reid, Ravens coach John Harbaugh -- a former special teams coordinator -- also doesn't appear thrilled with the change. In fact, he said the Ravens voted against it because they "thought there were better ideas."

"The fair catch rule, we had a chance to weigh in on that with all the special teams coaches," Harbaugh said, via Pro Football Talk. "We had a long talk and discussion about that. We weren't for it. We voted against it. We think it's going to create more high-speed head trauma than not having it in there. That's our position on it. But we'll see. They want to give it a shot and take a look at it."

Lions head coach Dan Campbell called the change "highly frustrating" and openly worried about the game losing its identity.  

"I hate that we continue to take away from the game," Campbell added. "That's what really worries me. We continue to bleed this. If we're not careful, it won't replenish at one point." 

There are certainly pros and cons associated with the new kickoff rules. A major benefit to the rule change is that it will limit the amount of collisions that occur during kickoffs returns as it will undoubtedly limit the amount of returns. The league has been trying to make the game safer, and this is a significant step. 

That being said, the new rules could all but eliminate kickoff returns, which have been an integral part of the league since its inception. Kickoffs already began to evaporate when the NFL moved touchbacks from the 20 to the 25-yard-line. The league's decision in 2011 to move kickoffs from the 30 to the 35-yard-line also led to fewer kickoff returns. 

Reid knows better than anyone the impact that a kick returner can have on a game. As an assistant on the Packers' 1996 coaching staff, Reid watched as Desmond Howard became the first (and only) special teams player to win Super Bowl MVP in Green Bay's 35-21 win over New England in Super Bowl XXXI. Howard's 99-yard kickoff return late in the third quarter proved to be the game-clinching score. 

As noted above, the NFL has committed to implementing these rules for only the 2023 season. The league will certainly make changes if the new rules have too many negative ramifications. But for this season, kickoffs will be significantly impacted, and each of the league's 32 teams will have to adjust accordingly.