Monday, September 18, 2006

NFL's Overtime Rule Needs to Change

The NFL's current overtime rule, under which 28% of the games are won on the first overtime possession, is a joke. They ought to either go ahead and decide the victor by coin toss, laying aside all illusions of competitiveness, or go with a college-style approach, where each team gets the opportunity to run its offense.

I know that people like Phil Simms disagree with me on this, but those people are wrong.


Anonymous Anonymous Me said...


After being out of the state for a week, I can say we agree on something. The overtime rule sucks.

What to adopt? Simple. Look at the college solution. Put the ball on the 35, and play. If the team scores, the other team gets the ball, and attempts to match or top that score. Keep going until there's a winner. On the third overtime, teams must go for 2 after a touchdown.

It wouldn't take any longer than the current rule, given the 4-6 minute drive to score. The rule is especially unfair given the league's rule changes in recent years favoring the offence in the passing game (though you wouldn't have known that watching the Chiefs game!).

Stupid rule. Change it.

9/18/2006 12:06 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

I agree with anonymous me. Use the college rule. I remember (I think) being at a home game when Tamarik Vanover ran one back all the way to open the overtime. Exciting yes, but I felt like it wasn't a fair victory.

9/18/2006 2:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

First off, I'd like to say that I'd rather see the NFL revert to no overtime, and just let a game finish in a draw. It varies up the standings more (less crazy tiebreakers needed). I can make the argument that "if it's good enough for football all around the world, it's good enough for us," in regards to soccer, rugby, and Australian football. But the ultimate effect is that there would be less games undecided after 60 minutes - teams would make a concerted effort to try and win a game because of the threat of a tie.

But I understand that "we" (Americans) like games to be a win or a loss (although I think that's a lie and people are just intimidated by the "kissing-your-sister" line). So here's my two cents:

College overtime is absolutely horrid. I'm shocked that there's so few people that see it for what it is: an abomination of football.

College overtime is an exercise in red-zone drills - this is such a small part of the actual game that it's not a fair assessment of who should be winning a game.
Putting the ball on the 35 effectively eliminates about 40% of the FIELD. The position-kicking game is completely gone, even though it can make or break a 60-minute game. Teams also pretty regularly play four-down football - that's not something you usually see in 60-minute games until the end of each half.

The current rule needs fixing, but I believe the college rule is a step WAY backwards. Here are my suggestions for changing the NFL rule - they may include some other major changes:

---Most of these systems are BEST with a 3-2-1-0 point-system, where standings are shown in points instead of wins and losses. 3 points for a win, 2 points for an OT win, 1 point for an OT loss.

1) No overtime - game ends in tie (see above).

2) Fifth quarter - game continues WITHOUT a kickoff from the situation in which the fourth quarter ended.

3) First to 4 points - self-explanatory, you must score one touchdown or two of anything else.

4) "Silver Point" - 5-minute periods, where if one team leads at the end of a period they are the winner.

9/10/2007 2:08 PM  
Blogger Joseph said...

What if the nfl just gave the ball to the team that asks for worse field position? If a team wants to start at their own 8 yard line it's because they either have great offense or want to put their opponents in good field position. That way if you get scored on right away it's your fault for not asking for worse field position.

12/15/2008 11:55 AM  

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