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NFL tables tweak on OT

Discussion in 'NFL Discussions' started by Heatherthepackgirl, Mar 29, 2007.

  1. Heatherthepackgirl

    Heatherthepackgirl Cheesehead

    Likes Received:
    Nov 22, 2005
    Fontana, CA
    For now, ball will stay on 30 when teams kick off

    The NFL's competition committee, which consists of mostly head coaches and general managers, supported a rule change that would move the opening kickoff in overtime from the 30-yard line to the 35. Their basis for the change was an increasing rate in which the receiving team was winning overtime games.

    Before the advent of the slicker "K" ball, overtime games were won at an equal rate between those who won the toss and those who didn't, but with shorter kickoffs the scale tipped heavily to those that won the toss, topping out at 64% in '06. The competition committee felt the better field position was creating the disparity and wanted to see if moving up the kickoff would even up the results.

    But according to Atlanta Falcons general manager Rich McKay there was one faction that wanted overtime to require each team to have at least one possession, another faction that wanted to wait and see if the current trend continued before making a move and another that thought it would adversely affect a special teams advantage one team had over another.

    McKay said he will survey those who were against the proposal to find out specific objections and see if a consensus can be raised. He said the competition committee remains concerned about the lopsided numbers.

    "I don't think it will happen this year," he said of a rule change. "But it's something we'll potentially discuss again in May."

    Commissioner Roger Goodell said he was against a two-possession plan that would guarantee each team a shot at scoring points because he felt the focus of the game should be on trying to win in regulation.

    Odds and ends: Among the other items the owners addressed before adjourning were:

    • Voted to levy a 5-yard penalty for players who spike the ball anywhere but in the end zone after a touchdown or out of bounds.

    • Made it mandatory that a player who dives into the end zone must carry the ball over the pylon for it to be a touchdown. In the past, only a portion of the player's body had to cross the goal line.

    • Made it legal for defensive players to shove quarterbacks to the ground provided it is done in the process of a pass being thrown. In many cases, that was being called roughing the passer.

    • Rejected a proposal that would increase the game day roster from 45 to 47 players.

    The next phase: Green Bay Packers general manager Ted Thompson left the owners meetings to attend USC's pro day.

    Over the next month, Thompson and coach Mike McCarthy will be working on preparations for the draft April 28-29. McCarthy said the Packers have a draft board set up, but there will be a lot of changes as Thompson and his scouts attend workouts and continue to evaluate film.

    With the 16th pick in the first round, McCarthy figures the Packers can get a player who can contribute right away.

    "I think A.J. Hawk answered that question; I think Daryn Colledge answered that question," McCarthy said. "Really, it depends on how he comes in. We'll give him an opportunity to. That's one thing I can tell you. We'll give him an opportunity to contribute."

    Number changes: The club announced that wide receiver Robert Ferguson had changed his jersey number from 89 to 87, and linebacker Abdul Hodge had changed his from 55 to 52.

    McCarthy said Ferguson is healed from a foot sprain and was taking part in the team's off-season conditioning program.

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