2016 Playing Rules Proposals

[Editor’s note: The NFL released the following proposed rules changes for the 2016 season, which have been recommended by individual teams or by the Competition Committee and will be voted on by the league’s 32 owners.]

PASSED: 1. By Competition Committee; Permanently moves the line of scrimmage for Try kicks to the defensive team’s 15-yard line, and allows the defense to return any missed Try.
PASSED: 2. By Competition Committee; Permits the offensive and defensive play callers on the coaching staffs to use the coach-to-player communication system regardless of whether they are on the field or in the coaches’ booth.
PASSED: 3. By Competition Committee; Makes all chop blocks illegal.
PASSED: 4. By Competition Committee; Disqualifies a player who is penalized twice in one game for certain types of unsportsmanlike conduct fouls.
PASSED: 5. By Competition Committee; Changes the spot of the next snap after a touchback resulting from a free kick to the 25-yard line.
6. By Baltimore; to amend Rule 5, Sections 3, Articles 1 and 2 (Changes in Position) to require players to wear jersey vests with numbers appropriate for their positions.
7. By Baltimore; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Articles 1, 4, and 5 (Instant Replay) to provide each team with three challenges and expand reviewable plays.
8. By Buffalo; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Articles 1, 4, and 5 (Instant Replay) to permit a coach to challenge any official’s decision except scoring plays and turnovers.
9. By Carolina; to amend Rule 8, Section 2, Article 1 (Intentional Grounding) to expand the definition of intentional grounding.
10. By Kansas City; to amend Rule 14, Section 2, Article 1 (Half-distance Penalty) to add penalty yards to the distance needed to gain a First Down.
WITHDRAWN: 11. By Kansas City; to amend Rule 8, Section 1, Article 2 (Legal Forward Pass) to prohibit quarterbacks from falling to the ground, getting up, and throwing a forward pass.
12. By Minnesota; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Article 1 (Coaches’ Challenge) to eliminate the requirement that a team be successful on each of its first two Instant Replay challenges in order to be awarded a third challenge.
13. By Washington; to amend Rule 16, Section 1, Articles 1, 4, 6 and 7 (Overtime procedures) to eliminate overtime periods in preseason games.
14. By Washington; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Article 4 (Reviewable Plays) to subject personal foul penalties to Instant Replay review.
15. By Washington; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Article 1 (Coaches’ Challenge) to eliminate the requirement that a team be successful on each of its first two Instant Replay challenges in order to be awarded a third challenge.
PASSED:16. By Competition Committee; Expands the horse collar rule to include when a defender grabs the jersey at the name plate or above and pulls a runner toward the ground.
PASSED:17. By Competition Committee; Makes it a foul for delay of game when a team attempts to call a timeout when it is not permitted to do so.
PASSED:18. By Competition Committee; Eliminates the five-yard penalty for an eligible receiver illegally touching a forward pass after being out of bounds and re-establishing himself inbounds, and makes it a loss of down.
PASSED:19. By Competition Committee; Eliminates multiple spots of enforcement for a double foul after a change of possession.

22 responses to “2016 Playing Rules Proposals

  1. All PI calls should be automatically reviewed. There’s too much potential to change the course of a game…..which is probably why they won’t review them.

  2. I’ve always said that when a team is on the 2 yard line (98 to go) and commits a penalty then it should not be 1/2 distance. I’ve always felt that the first down marker should be moved up 5 yards.

  3. 20. (by Season Ticket Holders) Eliminate the requirement/extortion to pay full price for preseason games.

  4. I think #10 is being overlooked. I take this to mean that if you are on offense and getting penalized half the distance to your own goal, the remaining distance is added on the to amount needed for a first down. It seems quite sensible to me.

  5. I would love to see “illegal contact” not be an automatic first down. It is a 5 yard penalty. Of it is 3rd and 30 and the ref makes an illegal contact call it is a first down. Makes no sense.

  6. This game has become unrecognizable from years past. This is no longer the game I and many grew up watching. Goodell and the owners don’t want NFL football, nooo, they want a game with less and less contac so the fans will except it more and more intil there is no phyical contac at all. Most real NFL fans will turn to the lignite league at some point only because it will be more physical. What a shame and disgrace what they did to this once greatest game of all.

  7. #14 — So teams get 3 challenges? or 2, +1 if they are right on either of the first two?

    I think either is fine, but I’d like to see an expansion of the auto-replay — assuming they can do it faster than last season.

  8. Replay Challenges: Every team gets one free challenge that can be used at any point of the game. If you win, you keep it. If you lose you lose it. If you have lost your free challenge, you are also allowed to challenge if you have any timeouts left. Again, if you win you’re not charged a timeout. If you lose you lose a timeout. Simple.

  9. How about making a rule that after kickoffs, teams must go to the line and start playing. Why do they need to go to commercial after kickoffs when they just came back from commercial after the last score?

    I know this doesn’t really fall under game playing rules, but they do want to improve the fan experience…don’t they?

  10. Most of these are not going anywhere. Probably all of the Competition Committee’s recommendations will pass and the elimination of overtime in preseason games should be a shoo-in but that’s probably it. I do like KC’s proposal on the so-called “Peyton Manning fall down rule” as a result of his play vs the Steelers in last season’s playoffs. In that play, he fell down to the ground in an apparent attempt to avoid contact (sack) and subsequently got up untouched and completed a forward pass. That should pass but I predict that it will not.

  11. Replay Challenge Rule: Teams should be allotted two challenges per game (not per half) but must have a time out to challenge. All plays and penalties should be challenge-able.

    If they their challenge is right, and the on field ruling is reversed, they should keep the challenge. If the ruling in the field is upheld they lose their challenge and a time out. Team should be able to continue to challenge any bad calls as long as they have a challenge remaining.

    This will force the league to find some refs that can get the initial on-field rulings right the first time.

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