League observers and insiders have for years been suggesting that footballs should be spiked with an electronic device that will allow officials to determine whether the plane of the goal line has been broken. A group at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh (alma mater of a certain Internet hack with whom you may be familiar) actively has been researching such a feature.
Now, Reuters reports that a German company claims it is in discussions with the NFL about developing the technology.
“Yes, we are talking. There is a demand in American football,” Cairos Technologies
sales director Mario Hanus told Reuters, via SportsBusiness Daily.
The league would neither confirm nor deny the discussions.
Hanus, however, needs to learn more about American football.
“In American football you have the same situation,” Hanus said, comparing the possible use of such a device in soccer to football. “You need to cross a
line and the ball needs to be over the line 100 percent and [the
player] are always above the ball [covering it].”
Actually, in American football only a portion — any portion — of the ball needs to break the plane of the goal line. But we’ll give Hanus the benefit of the doubt on this one.
As long as his company figures it out before implementing the device.