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2017 rule changes

New rules proposals from the Competition Committee [live updates]

Liveblog coverage of the Competition Committee announcement of new rules proposals



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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