We’ve heard a lot of different opinions in the last few days about proper etiquette during kneel-down plays since the contentious end of the Buccaneers-Giants game on Sunday, but we haven’t heard anything quite like Cowboys owner Jerry Jones’ take.
Jones’ take doesn’t tell you whether he agrees with Buccaneers coach Greg Schiano’s belief in going full speed when the offense takes a knee or Giants coach Tom Coughlin’s belief that time left on the clock doesn’t mean every down needs to be fully played out. Jones wants the play banned altogether because he thinks that it lowers the entertainment value for fans when teams don’t run plays until the game is over.
“I don’t like it,” Jones said, via Jon Machota of the Dallas Morning News. “Lamar Hunt tried several times to introduce a rule to have it voted on that you couldn’t kneel down, you had to run a play. Unless you were trying to advance the ball, then you got a penalty and the time didn’t run off the clock. It’s not a good play. I’ve always thought that that’s a wasted play for our fans”
The Cowboys took a knee three times to end their win against the Giants, so his desire to see the play abolished hasn’t actually stood in the way of the team minimizing their risk on the field at the risk of alienating the people off of it. Not that there really seems to be much chance of that. Most fans are just fine with kneel-downs as long as their team is the one doing the kneeling and it’s hard too many other teams are thinking that they’d like to make the final moments of a win more tense.
Having said that, you can’t deny the positives of the idea. Forcing teams to play out the final seconds with a slim lead would make for entertaining viewing and you’d probably wind up with at least a couple more thrilling endings each season. That makes it fun to think about for a few minutes, but the chances of seeing it enacted would seem to be about the same as Jones hiring a General Manager.