Competition committee to propose 10-minute OT in regular season and preseason

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The NFL will be holding league meetings next week that include the annual set of proposed changes to the rules made by the league’s competition committee.

One of those changes will deal with the way overtime works in the regular season and preseason. This won’t be a tweak to the current rules about whether both teams get the ball — they do, unless a team scores a touchdown — but to how long the overtime session lasts.

Judy Battista of NFL Media reports that the committee will propose shortening overtime to 10 minutes until the postseason, when the extra period would last 15 minutes and extend even further if the game remains tied. The idea behind the proposal is that a team would be at a “real disadvantage” if they played a full 15-minute overtime before playing on a Thursday night.

There have been 83 overtime games in the last five years, per NFL Research, and 22 of them have lasted for more than 10 minutes. That’s less than two percent of all the games played during those seasons, which doesn’t mean it’s a bad idea but suggests it won’t have much impact on overall life in the NFL if the change is adopted as a new league rule.

18 responses to “Competition committee to propose 10-minute OT in regular season and preseason

  1. Why won’t they adopt a “Kansas Plan” style solution?

    Forget kickoffs and punts. Each team gets an equal opportunity to win it or blow it.

  2. Good thing NFL HQ is constantly tweaking football. The game was in shambles until they started making all these changes. Maybe someday the game will be popular enough for TV networks to bid against each other just to carry a few games per week. Maybe someday the game will be popular enough that there will be internet blogs that cover the sport even through the off season when there are no games taking place. Maybe if they keep tweaking the game enough eventually we might get to that point in time?

  3. I have an idea — if the NFL is worried about teams playing on Sunday being physically prepared to play the upcoming Thursday night — why not just cancel Thursday night games?

  4. A more meaningful change would have been to just play 10 minutes and call it a tie, if one team is not ahead.
    Better yet don’t play OT at all in the regular season, nothing wrong with two teams playing to a draw.
    Quite frankly I don’t understand the American obsession that a game cannot end in a tie.

  5. Why don’t we speed up the game by making all the quarters 5 minutes long until the playoffs when they go back to normal time?

  6. I’m more interested in how often a teams final standings were impacted by playing overtime. If there’s no significant effect on playoff position or even draft position then I’d say let a tie be a tie and be done with it.

  7. 22 out of 83 is a high enough percentage to NOT change it. Considering it at all is ludicrous.

    Can anyone remember the last offseason that the NFL did NOT change anything? I can’t.

  8. “Better yet don’t play OT at all in the regular season, nothing wrong with two teams playing to a draw. Quite frankly I don’t understand the American obsession that a game cannot end in a tie.”

    You must be a soccer or hockey fan. Why play the game at all then if declaring a winner is not important? Why don’t we just conduct a series of coin flips to determine the Super Bowl winner and spare us the seven months of the season? Hell, let’s just give everyone a trophy.

  9. If Thursday night games are an issue, don’t have them until byes start. Then have every Thursday night game be a matchup between two teams coming off of a bye. They’re rested and ready and also get a long weekend after playing.

  10. Why not ditch the Thursday games and have an NCAA-style overtime? The current system puts too much emphasis on the luck of a coin flip, rather than the skill of the teams.

  11. Just do it like they do in college. Give each team the ball at the 30-yard line and let them try to score. The team that scores the most points in a given “round” wins. This would do away with ties.

  12. Just abolish overtime.

    If the scores are tied @ 59:59:59 on the clock, an automatic officials time-out is called. The road team then gets a shot at a sudden-death XP. Simple. If they miss, the home team gets a shot. This puts the emphasis on the home team to get the game won in regular time.

    At the same time as introducing this rule change, I would also adopt a revised scoring system that would reduce the frequency of OT; viz;

    1 point=an extra point try,
    2 points=two point conversion try,
    3 points=FG try from the 35 or closer,
    4 points=FG try from behind the 35,
    5 points=Safety,
    6 points=TD scored from the 50 or nearer,
    7 points=TD scored from your own half, (including kick/punt returns).

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