As the clouds gather for Wednesday’s vote regarding the much-needed tweaking of the league’s overtime procedures, it’s no surprise that two bitter rivals are on opposite ends of the spectrum.
The New York Jets currently oppose the measure, according to Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post.
“It’s working pretty well the way it’s going now,” Johnson told Hubbuch on Sunday in Orlando. “We’re going to look at it until the final moment, but as of right now, we’re kind of leaning toward keeping it the way it is now.”
In contrast, the New England Patriots favor the change. Said owner Bob Kraft on Monday, according to Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com: “I think it will be
more exciting. . . . It’s another way that we keep working to improve our
And that’s the key phrase — “improving our product.” It’s a mantra that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has been reciting both publicly and privately; the league is successful because it’s always looking for ways to become better. Removing an inherently unfair outcome — a first-drive field goal to win a playoff game — will necessarily improve the product.
Still, it remains to be seen how it all turns out. As of right now, the Ravens and Bengals oppose the move, based on their “no” votes before the Competition Committee. The Jets are leaning against the measure. The Lions and Vikings are on the fence.
And it takes only nine “no” votes to kill the deal.
Still, some influential owners back the move — including Pats owner Bob Kraft and, based on the outcome before the Competition Committee, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, Texans owner Bob McNair, Giants co-owner John Mara, and Falcons owner Arthur Blank. Also supporting the measure based on the 6-2 outcome before the supposedly influential rule-making body (whose status as truly being “influential” will be undermined if the measure fails) are Titans owner Bud Adams and Colts owner Jim Irsay.
It’s also possible that some of the teams leaning “no” will be tying their final position to other concessions. The Jets, for example, might want assurances that the proposed New York Super Bowl remains a wink-nod done deal despite last week’s coin-flip flap. The Vikings could be attempting to finagle support from the league office for a post-2011 relocation of the franchise, which could help leverage a new stadium in Minnesota. And the Lions might be looking for a guarantee that they’ll continue to have a hammerlock on one of the Thanksgiving games.
Should such concerns influence the voting process? No. Can they? Absolutely.
Still, when the time comes we hope that this supposedly unified body of owners will set aside their own agendas and cast a ballot with an eye toward the greater good of the game.