NFL Competition Committee is meeting to address new rule changes, here is what I would do

The NFL season has been officially over for two weeks now. Thankfully the league is a marketing genius and will continue to feed our fandom over the course of the next few weeks/months.

New York Giants v Philadelphia Eagles
New York Giants v Philadelphia Eagles / Adam Hunger/GettyImages

The combine, free agency, the draft, and schedule release are just a few things football-starved fans can look forward to in the coming months.

Another thing that happens is that decision-makers around the league get together every offseason as part of the Rules Committee to decide on rule changes proposed by teams.

I wanted to do something different. Like many content creators, I like to play make-believe and pretend to be a GM or a coach. Today, I’m knighting myself as a Football Czar for a day where I am the all-powerful rule changer. Below are five rules I would implement immediately.

Slide Rule: I know, I know, the quarterback position is more often than not the face of most franchises and it’s good business to have these guys on the field each and every week, but they are football players too. I get the spirit of the rule. The problem is, like most rules, players will find ways to exploit loopholes.

There are some (I’m looking at you Josh Allen) who now have the fake slide in their repertoire. The slide rule already is an unfair advantage to the offensive player. Defensive players are expected to throttle down from 60 to 0 when they feel a quarterback is about to slide so as to not be hit with a 15-yard penalty. That’s a hard thing to do for these guys with the size and speed we are talking about.

Throw in a fake slide and it gets even tougher. My football Czarness says no more sliding. If you don’t want to get hit, throw the ball away. Otherwise, you are a runner just like anyone else who carries the ball.

12 Men on the Field - Let me put this in context. In my opinion, a guy running off the field that is one step from the sideline is not affecting the play at all. My change is easy, a player who is running off the field is not considered to be the 12th man on the field as long as he is outside the numbers. It’s crazy to me to see a team get a free play and/or 5 yards just because a player is late getting off the field.

Again the spirit of the rule is that a team should not garner an unfair advantage due to having an extra player on the field participating in the play. That I get, that needs to be penalized but to see Tom Brady (who was a master at this) rush to the line of scrimmage to snap the ball in order to take advantage of a 300 pounder who is four feet from being off the field seems a bit ridiculous. Again, I like to always ask, what is the spirit of the rule? 

Half the Distance to the Goal: I’ve never understood this concept. Why is a 15-yard penalty a 15-yard penalty anywhere else on the field but as soon as you are backed up inside your own 30 it can be anywhere from a 14-yard to a ½ yard penalty? Make it make sense! Sorry but if you commit a 15-yard penalty on the 11-yard line then it goes back to the one. It almost incentivizes the offense to hold inside their own 10 (as long as you don’t do it in the endzone). The worst case is a 5-yard penalty and a replay of the down. 

No Offsetting Penalties - While we are on the subject of penalties and penalty yardage, there are no more offsetting penalties. Penalty yardage is marked off as required. A five yard penalty is not the same as a 15-yard penalty. Just recognizing the yardage involved in said infractions illustrates this. So if the offense holds and the defense commits a personal foul, then it’s a net five yards for the offense. In this scenario, the dual fouls would also negate any automatic first downs. 

Overtime - Give me the Super Bowl rule all day. I know player safety tends to be at the top of the decision-making pile when it comes to rule changes. Playing another quarter flies in the face of that but this one makes too much sense to me. Play a 5th quarter and at the end, the game is decided. Give each team the opportunity to win, whether the first team scores a touchdown or not. If at the end of an additional quarter, the game isn’t decided then it ends in a tie but at least both teams will have had the opportunity with the ball. 

I’m sure most NFL fans and probably many of the players would agree with these rule changes. These make a lot more sense than others that have been proposed throughout the years.