Not like they have don't bigger decisions to make or anything, but the NFL announced that they will move kickoffs up from the 30 yard line to the 35 yard line. The reasoning? There will be a higher number of touchbacks this year, decreasing the risk for injury on kick returns. In related news, we continue to be a nation of wussies.
I'm pretty sure we all grew up with bullying, kick returns, and restless leg syndrome. I'm also fairly certain that our species can survive with those three things. But nation be damned if Oprah, Roger Goodell, and some twat doc aren't doing their best to put a stop to them.
According to Pro Football Talk, the two-man wedge, however, will still be allowed.
That's horrible logic. It would be like Toyota acknowledging that there is a problem with their brakes, but instead of fixing them, they just made less cars. It doesn't address the actual problem.
The rule change will do nothing to make kick returns safer, instead it will just decrease the number of them. Never mind the fact that owners wanted to add two games to the schedule, which would have turned this whole thing into a math equation (KR/Y=X…X/16*18=HOW THE FUCK MANY TOTAL RETURNS THERE WOULD HAVE BEEN).
All of this ignores the fact that the rule change will have a big impact on that game, as there will be significantly more touchbacks
This "solution" is like a drunk driving home from the bar only half of the time. I can go on and on with analogies here. This is putting a band-aid on a problem if I ever saw it.
If the league is so concerned about player safety during kick returns, then come up with something (other than decreasing the running-start distance from 15 to 5 yards) to address the issue. Just cutting in half the number of returns doesn't make the play any safer.
This all comes in addition to a proposal, which has been shelved for now, to redefine "defenseless player": [ESPN.com]
NFL to be more aggressive with suspensions for illegal hits next season. Rules defining defenseless players expanded to eight categories:
• QB in act of throwing
• Receiver trying to catch pass
• Runner in grasp with forward progress stopped
• Player fielding punt or kickoff
• Kicker or punter during kick
• QB after change of possession
• Receiver who receives blind-side block
• Player already on ground
Bascially, defensive players would have to introduce themselves to the opposition, inform them of their intent to engage, then bear hug (GENTLY!) tackle them to the ground- preferably on a soft patch of chewed up synthetic blend turf.
The new NFL, ladies and gentlemen.