The NFL found a way to agree on something earlier this week as the competition committee elected to move kickoffs from the 30 to the 35 yard line. It’s a new rule that would go into a affect this season, assuming the guys figure out how to split a few billion dollars.
The reasoning for the rule change was player safety and the committee projects that touchbacks will rise between 5 to 15 percent with the added five yards. Unless you’re Billy Cundiff in which case you will now kick every ball through the end zone.
Former Ravens head coach and current NFL analyst Brian Billick questioned the validity of the competition’s committee’s argument about player safety in a post on his blog on Wednesday.
I am not sure the data on injuries of these plays is substantial enough to bring about the rule change. They also considered not allowing the current two-man wedge, but there was no indication it presented any additional injury risk. I think the League is perhaps just a little hyper focused on the appearance of wanting to maximize player safety at a time they are confronting each other in a new CBA negotiation.
If not player safety, then why? Ravens head coach John Harbaugh told the media that the Ravens “can live with the ball at the 35-yard line,” but that it “doesn’t help” his team. If it doesn’t help, why did John’s team vote in favor of the rule change?
I’m not a big fan of moving the ball forward. What’s the point of more touchbacks? To me, the NFL is taking away one of it’s most exciting plays.