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March 19, 2014 at 1:40 PM

NFL announces lots of potential rules changes — A few of my own thoughts

The NFL’s Competition Committee today announced 13 new proposed rules changes, seven bylaw changes and one proposed resolution.

ProFootballTalk details them all here. lists the ones it thinks you need to know the most about here. Here’s an overview from the Washington Post. Here’s a good explainer from of the reasoning behind each proposal. And here are the members of the committee.

Important to note, these are just proposals — the owners will vote on them next week. Many/most will not be approved.

One that has gotten the most discussion in recent weeks was the idea to try to call a penalty for abusive language.

But as the stories note, that instead will not be a new rule but an emphasis under the current rule for unsportsmanlike conduct. That could still lead to a lot of controversy next season when a game is determined by such a call. The guess here, though, is that this is something that will be much talked about when officials meet with teams during camp, and coaches will talk a lot about it to players, as well, but that this probably won’t be a real big deal on the field in the fall.

A few other quick thoughts:

— Not sure the reason for moving kickoffs to the 40 when the kickoff already is increasingly irrelevant. Maybe it would lead to more pooch kicks or something, not that the world is crying out for most of those;

— No overtime in pre-season games is probably favored by some coaches to make things easier in the pre-season. Fans, though, are already being gouged big money for those games and it seems like you ought to at least let them leave with a resolution one way or the other;

— I’m sort of one who likes trying to keep the game as much like the game of years past as possible, so the 42-yard PAT isn’t something I’d vote for. That said, I get why people are getting bored by the PAT. It’s interesting to me that it feels like every kicker I’ve heard talk about it has been against it, when it seems like something that would only increase the value of the really good kickers. Just one or two of those misses a year could really change a team’s season;

— I like the idea to extend the goal posts, which is designed to make it easier for officials to determine if kicks are good;

— Not sure I love the proposals that allow for more challenges and replay reviews. Sure, they’d get a few more calls right. But seems like a real potential¬† there to drag things out even more than already is sometimes the case — coaches are inevitably going to want to challenge just about anything that they think will give them an edge;

— Most fans probably wouldn’t notice any of the bylaw proposals. But as Seahawks fans know, the team makes as much use as possible of its available time and roster moves. But for the hardcore fans, get ready to hear about even more moves during the season if there are two more practice squad spots.

Finally, appears there’s nothing yet on a team for Hard Knocks for 2014 other than it has already been reported that the Seahawks will not be a consideration:



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