Category Archives: Rules School

Unconventional look for unconferenced 2014 Pro Bowl

The Pro Bowl will undergo radical changes this season in an attempt to add variety to a typically dull game. The league, based on their promotional spots for the game, would like us to highlight the fact that this game … Continue reading

Sometimes a safety is just a safety

AFC Divisional Playoff: Colts at Patriots When the snap sails over the punter’s head and out the back of the end zone, all of us have the same first reaction:  safety.  However this season we saw many instances of bizarre … Continue reading

You make the call: How would you rule in these 10 punt situations?

How well do you know your rules when it comes to downing punts? Take the Football Zebras rules quiz to see how well you do. Continue reading

2 reasons why Le’Veon Bell helmet-less TD can never be TD

Player safety must trump exceptions to the rule During the Ravens-Steelers Thanksgiving night football game, the Steelers’ Le’Veon Bell was lunging toward the goal line when he was hit with a devastating blow from the Ravens, knocking his helmet off.  … Continue reading

Media tape: Pylon/sideline reviewable, fumble recovery in field of play is not

NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino narrates the weekly media tape on calls from the previous week, which can be downloaded here. Several unusual calls this week under discussion: A Ravens blocked punt recovery beyond the line of scrimmage, … Continue reading

Training tape: defenseless receiver, taunting, clock on out-of-bounds fumble

Also, both feet touching the ground in bounds and the mechanics for a fair catch kick. Continue reading

No rule to help home team on fan’s whistle

49ers at Seahawks (video/audio) Early in the game, the Seahawks fell victim to a fan who blew a whistle in the crowd — their own home crowd. Some of the Seahawks linemen looked genuinely confused, as they believed it was … Continue reading

1st use of new rule might not be right use

Week 1: Texans at Chargers (video) Post updated: The league has stated the rule was incorrectly applied (see below). The Competition Committee looked at a specific instance of dangerous play at the request of players: the vulnerability of the center … Continue reading

LJ Baynes keeps crew on no-TD call

Ravens at Broncos (video via Deadspin) 4th qtr | 12:35. On a night when Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning throws seven touchdowns — first time anyone has done that since Joe Kapp in 1969 — his teammate, Danny Trevathan, upstaged everything … Continue reading

Summary of 2013 rules changes

Football Zebras interviewed NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino back in May about rule changes that take effect for the 2013 season. The times in the podcast when each item is discussed are listed below. Open-field runners and defenders … Continue reading