Eliminate the onside kick? Revamp overtime? Five things to know about NFL rule changes proposed for 2019
There could be some major rule changes coming in 2019
Chiefs coach Andy Reid wasn't willing to admit it after his team's playoff loss to the Patriots in January, but it seems that he'd definitely like to see the NFL change its overtime rules for 2019.
The Chiefs proposal to revamp overtime was among the nine proposed rule changes that the NFL announced on Friday. Every year, the league allows each team to submit any rule proposal that they see fit. The rule is then vetted by the competition committee in mid-March and if the committee endorses the proposal, then the NFL's 32 owners will vote on it at their annual league meeting at the end of the month.
This year's league meeting will be held from March 24-27 in Phoenix.
With that in mind, let's take a look at the five biggest proposals.
1. Chiefs want to revamp overtime.
Apparently, the Chiefs have some pent up frustration with overtime, because they proposed three different changes on Friday. The first change is the most obvious: The Chiefs want to see overtime changed so that both teams get the opportunity to possess the ball at least one time in overtime, even if the first team to possess the ball in overtime scores a touchdown.
If you watched the AFC Championship game, you may realize why the Chiefs feel so strongly about this rule. The Patriots beat the Chiefs 37-31 in overtime in a game where Kansas City's offense didn't get to touch the ball in overtime. Under this rule proposal, the Chiefs would have gotten a chance to respond to New England's touchdown.
The second part of Kansas City's overtime proposal involves the coin toss. The Chiefs want to eliminate the OT coin toss and set things up so that the winner of the initial coin toss to start the game would get to decide whether to kick or receive in overtime, or which goal to defend.
The final part of the Chiefs proposal is more simple: They want to eliminate overtime in the preseason. There is literally no reason for a preseason game to go into overtime, so you'd think that most teams would want to get behind this proposal.
2. The Broncos want to dump the onside kick
Someone in the Broncos front office must have been watching the AAF this year, because Denver has proposed a rule that's eerily similar to the onside kick rule that's used in that league. Under the Broncos' proposal, instead of an onside kick after a team scores, they would have the option of taking possession of the ball at their own 35-yard line to try and convert a fourth-and-15. If they get the 15 yards, they get a first down and keep possession of the ball. If they don't get the 15 yards, the other team takes over on downs wherever the possession ended.
In the AAF, instead of an onside kick, teams are allowed to try and convert a fourth-and-12 play from their own 28 in certain situations (The onside kick is only allowed if a team is trailing by 17 or more points or if they're trailing with under five minutes left in the game).
3. The Redskins want to make everything reviewable
It seems the Redskins have a simple solution to the ugly problem the NFL ran into in the NFC Championship game and that solution is: Make everything reviewable.
Under the Redskins proposal, all plays that occur during a game could potentially be subjected to a coaches' challenge or review by the officiating department in the instant replay system.
The proposal doesn't say that a penalty necessarily has to be called, so if this rule would have been in place last year, officials would have been able to review thethat took place late in the fourth quarter of the Rams 26-23 win over the Saints in the NFC title game.
The Redskins have also proposed a second rule change that would make personal fouls reviewable plays. The Chiefs have proposed a similar rule that would allow coaches to challenge personal foul calls whether they were called on the field or not. The Panthers, Rams, Eagles and Seahawks want to see the league allow coaches to challenge designated player safety-related fouls whether they were called on the field or not.
4. Eagles want to see a few more things subject to replay
Unlike the Redskins, the Eagles don't want to see everything subject to replay, but they are proposing a minor change. Philadelphia would like to see scoring plays and turnovers negated by a foul to be subject to automatic instant replay review. This one is pretty simple: If a touchdown or turnover is called back by a penalty, the play would be subject to review to make sure the officials got the call right.
5. Broncos offer more replay proposals
Not only do the Broncos want to see the onside kick changed, but they'd also like to see a few changes made to the NFL's replay system. Under the Broncos' proposal, all fourth down or goal line plays that are spotted short of the line to gain would be subject to automatic review. The Broncos are also proposing that all extra point and two-point conversion attempts be subject to review.
Basically, it seems that there are a lot of teams in the NFL that would like to see the replay system expanded. The competition committee will now take these proposals into consideration and will likely endorse them or take a pass on them at some point over the next two weeks.
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