The first rule change involves the force out rule. Previously, if a receiver made a catch but was knocked out of bounds by a defender preventing him from getting his feet down inbounds, it was ruled a catch. This was always a judgment call from the officials.
Now, the rule has been eliminated. From now on, the receiver has to get both his feet down or it’s not a catch. This will mean, of course, that defenders may try to push a player out of bounds prior to a two-toe tap. That’s when we’ll see the unofficial rule being enforced.
The league has also got rid of the five-yard face mask call. No longer will there be a penalty when a player incidentally grabs a face mask. That, again, will be a matter of interpretation. The ref will have to determine if the player let go of the facemask in time to avoid a flag.
By the way, the fifteen-yard facemask rule remains in place.
The coin toss also underwent some changes of its own. Now, if a coach wants to defer his choice of kicking off or receiving until the second half, he will have that option. This is the same rule that we see in college pigskins.
Field goals are now reviewable as well. And thank God they are. Last year, Phil Dawson of the Browns had a field goal attempt go through the uprights, bounce off the support bar and return to the field of play. The officials were not allowed to review it but finally corrected the original call that the field goal was no good. Now, they can use instant replay to review field goals.
Two more changes came from the meetings. Forward handoffs that had previously been ruled incomplete passes will now be considered fumbles. Also, botched snaps that were once ruled as false starts will now also be fumbles. Sounds like the number of fumbles will be increasing. Watch the box scores.
Please make note of the changes as some of these rules will impact your fantasy football scores from week to week.
The NFL also officially unveiled their
Isn’t it just lovely? You can see the changes in the lettering as well as the football. The Commish tells us that the new football in the logo is “more erect.”
That one, I ain’t touching! Feel free to insert your own Viagra/Cialis joke here. But Goodell did tell us that it looks more like the Lombardi Trophy.
And, most of the stars were removed from the logo leaving only eight to represent the number of divisions in the league.
I personally like the old one better but what do I know? I’m just a lowly internet blog hack!