Football Zebras™

New rules proposals from the Competition Committee [live updates]

The NFL Competition Committee is announcing their agenda for the 2017 Annual Meeting which includes new rules proposals. Football Zebras is reviewing the proposals as they are announced with instant analysis.

The announcement from Rich McKay, chairman of the committee, and Troy Vincent, executive vice president of football operations, includes proposals submitted by various teams as well as from the Competition Committee . A proposed rule must receive a two-thirds vote of the owners to pass. The owners will meet March 26-29 with the majority of rules-related business conducted on Tuesday. Monday’s agenda will be dominated by the Raiders proposed move to Las Vegas.

The proposals, with the team making the proposal or “CC” for Competition Committee proposals:

Playing rules

  1. Protect the long snapper from contact for 1 second (PHI)
  2. Abolish line leaping on field goal and extra-point kicks (PHI)
  3. Expand the crown hit rule to be a foul even if player turns head to the side (PHI)
  4. Expand coach’s challenge to any call except “hands” fouls (holding, pass interference, illegal contact) and unsportsmanlike conduct; and a 3rd challenge if at least one challenge is successful (PHI)
  5. Allow a 3rd challenge if at least one challenge is successful, and unlimited thereafter as long as each challenge is successful (WAS)
  6. All touchbacks to the 25-yard line, except kickoffs through the uprights would be a touchback to the 20 (WAS)
  7. Coach may challenge any call at any time in the game, except after a turnover or score. (BUF-SEA joint)
  8. Make permanent the automatic disqualification rule on the 2nd of certain unsportsmanlike penalties that was in effect in 2016 (CC)
  9. Extend to 2017 only the rule that kickoffs would touchback to the 25, which was in effect for 2016 only (CC)
  10. Reduce regular-season overtime to 10 minutes (CC)
  11. Extend defenseless player protections to a receiver running a route, but not if he’s in a blocking posture (CC)
  12. Extend the illegal crackback to an offensive player who was in motion (CC)
  13. Make replay centralized in the league headquarters and have the referee participate via tablet (CC)
  14. Multiple deliberate fouls to manipulate the clock are unsportsmanlike conduct, 15 yards and reset clock to time of snap (CC)
  15. Expand 10-second runoff situations to apply after the 2-minute warning, not to under 1 minute (CC)

Bylaws proposals

  1. Eliminate the first roster cut to 75 active players (WAS)
  2. Create a Concussion Exempt designation and allow a practice squad call-up to become active (WAS)
  3. Allow a team to opt out of “color rush” uniforms (WAS)
  4. Expand hosting rules for draft-eligible workouts and examinations (CC)
  5. Change return rules from Reserve/Non-Football Injury and Reserve/Physically Unable to Play lists to match injured reserve return rules (CC)
  6. Personnel notices to be issued by the league office on Sunday during training camp and preseason (CC)

Policy proposals

  1. Allow an alternate helmet color (new equipment) to be used with 3rd/color-rush jerseys (PHI)
  2. Extend contract negotiation rules for head coach candidates still active in postseason (CC)
  3. Allow non-football employees to work for another team during the season (CC)
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Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20176:56 pm

Washington is floating a proposal to be able to opt out of the Color Rush jerseys on Thursday nights. Their rationale is pure gold:

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20176:40 pm

Intentional penalties to burn the clock will be a 15-yard penalty and reset the game clock to the time at the snap. This is in response to deliberate triple and quadruple holding fouls by the 49ers and Ravens this season:

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20176:20 pm

Getting some details on the proposals. Washington gets the wacky proposal award this year, which went to Baltimore last year for proposing eligible-reports to wear pinnies.

The Washington proposal would have the touchback spot go to the 20, except it would go to the 25 only for kickoffs that go through the uprights. The proposal concludes with “Reason: Player safety.”

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20173:23 pm

It looks like the rules proposals won’t come up in the meeting agenda until Tuesday, because Monday will likely be dedicated to the Las Vegas Raiders situation

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20173:21 pm

Still waiting for the actual text of the proposals, and it is more than an hour after the Competition Committee conference call

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20173:17 pm

Some additional timing considerations would standardize the restart of the game clock on an out-of-bounds play (except under 2:00/2nd and under 5:00/4th), change halftime to 13½ minutes (but start immediately, as opposed to current 12 minutes when teams exit the field), and run a 40-sec clock after an extra-point attempt (unless there is a TV timeout).

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20172:54 pm

EVP/football ops Troy Vincent mentioned there were 2 unspecified cases of “catastrophic hits” that caused season-ending injury, which would be ejectable and/or suspendable. Specifics would be disseminated in the training camp rules video.

Patrick Weber Patrick Weber March 23, 20172:40 pm

Centralized reviews would involve Dean Blandino, Al Riveron, or an officiating supervisor in the command center. The referee will still have input, but will not go ‘under the hood’.

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20172:34 pm

Washington proposing to expand the number of challenges and change the touchback yard line (specifics are not available yet)

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20172:33 pm

Philadelphia is proposing additional protections for the long snapper and modifications to the crown-hit rule and replay rules

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20172:28 pm

Missed XPs have dropped the accuracy rate below 90%, which is the lowest since 1974 when goalposts were moved to end line

Patrick Weber Patrick Weber March 23, 20172:25 pm

Buffalo and Seattle have a joint proposal to allow coaches to challenge any officiating decision. In addition, Washington has proposed to increase the number of challenges.

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20172:23 pm

No changes to concussion protocol, but looking to add additional video feeds so both sidelines can monitor better

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20172:20 pm

NCAA is simultaneously looking at making FG leaps illegal. This has a good chance of being passed at both levels

Patrick Weber Patrick Weber March 23, 20172:19 pm

Competition Committee rule proposals:

1. Taking out leaping on XP/FG

2. Touchbacks going to the 25 to be extended for an additional year.

3. Permanent rule for automatic disqualification for two unsportsmanlike fouls.

4. Defenseless player protection on receivers during their route.

5. Centralized replay with input from the referee.

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20171:54 pm

Competition Committee announcement will be coming at 2pm Eastern

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20171:54 pm

Also, there apparently is a proposal to reduce regular season overtime to 10 minutes.

Ben Austro Ben Austro March 23, 20171:53 pm

Roger Goodell announced today that replay will be centralized in 2017.

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