Ravens suggest rule to allow eligible receivers, if they’re wearing a pinnie


The Ravens are either tired of being on the wrong end of ineligible receiver penalties, or owner Steve Bisciotti has a stake in a pinnie manufacturing company.

Among the goofier of the rules changes proposed for next week’s owners meeting is one submitted by Baltimore to clarify the eligible receiver rule.

The Ravens proposal would require an ineligible player (numbers 50-79 and 90-99) who goes into the game as an eligible receiver to “wear a jersey vest matching the team uniform, with an appropriate number for his eligible or ineligible status that has not already been assigned to another teammate.”

This seems like either an equipment manager’s worst nightmare, or an abuse of power by someone in the officially licensed merchandise arm of the team. Maybe both.

The Ravens might also just be trying to prove a point after two years of struggles with the rule. The Patriots got the better of them in the playoffs two years ago, and last year they had a completed pass to offensive lineman John Urschel waved off because the referee didn’t recognize him as eligible. The league admitted they screwed up the second one, but it’s clearly a rule that coach John Harbaugh has spent a lot of time thinking about.

72 responses to “Ravens suggest rule to allow eligible receivers, if they’re wearing a pinnie

  1. How about a rule that makes the Ravens players who have been arrested wear a pinnie? Then we’ll see how much Bisciotti wants to sell his product.

  2. When I read the list, I laughed at this one.

    Harbaugh must be losing a lot of sleep over this.

  3. That’s just funny….Completely takes the burden off the defense to identify who they need to cover.
    What I do not like is that the referee announces eligible reports on his mic, but doesn’t communicate it to the guy with the helmet mic on the defense. If they were required to report it to the defensive playcaller, that should solve all of the issues.

    If the defense still messes up, it’s on them. But under the current system, the defense is subbing to match the personnel package, and working on the play call, and they don’t always catch the reporting.

  4. Or you could coach your secondary to know the rules regarding the number of linemen the offense must have on the LOS and the rules regarding being covered up. It isn’t brain surgery.

  5. i like the idea. i cant stand hearing the ref announce to the world that a player who usually isnt is a eligible receiver. the defense should have to recognize that.

  6. BB has taken up residence in Harbaugh’s head. Cable TV and mail delivery all set up.

  7. The offseason for that team that wears the purple and black just gets better by the day. I love how it’s shaping up.

  8. I’m waiting for them to suggest that Ravens opponents are no longer allowed to blitz his offense.

    Followed by, opponents of the Ravens are not allowed to use play action in the passing game, because its “deception”. And we just cant have deception out there.

  9. Why stop at pinnies? How about when a normally ineligible player checks in as eligible he be given a helmet with lights and a siren on it so the defense knows they should cover him?

  10. its not that hard John. if you think the defense doesnt know whats going on call a timeout. on offense if you have Mike Wallace, Perriman, Watson, and Steve Smith, maybe you don’t need to be throwing to linemen, maybe you need to fire Marc Trestman

  11. I think they should just let every team make up the rules as they go. The refs don’t know the rules anyway. Why enforce them?

  12. Obviously, Harbaugh is frustrated that the NFL first let Belichick cheat his way to victory and then after the NFL supposedly fixed the problem, the refs screwed it up again. Good for Harbaugh. Best and fairest minded coach in the league. A true champion!

  13. Are they still complaining about that one game? You guys lost. Not because of football air, not because of eligble WR but bc Brady and company outperformed Joe and company just like the opposite happened 2012

  14. Haahahahaaahahaha! Are you freaking kidding me????????? The biggest butt hurt team award goes to the Ravens. Hey John, remember when the yelled out that number 34 was not eligble (loud enough that I heard it on TV)? The fact that neither you or your players had any idea what to do is a reflection of you and your preparedness.

  15. Ravens submitted another rule change -allow each team 3 timeouts during the draft so they won’t run out of time on another 1sr rd pick, a la 2011.

  16. this is all about ignorant officials who dont recognize or forget a guy reported as eligible. this is not a rule aimed at the pats and their paranoid fans who think the world is out to get them.pats fans should be more worried about tommy missing the lst 4 games this year

  17. The league admitted they got the 2nd one wrong, and the first one (with the Pats) resulted in a rule change. So, yeah, the Ravens are tired of getting hosed with the ineligible receiver rule. The games are too close for on-going screw ups.

  18. “Why stop at pinnies? How about when a normally ineligible player checks in as eligible he be given a helmet with lights and a siren on it so the defense knows they should cover him?”

    And those shoes little kids wear that flash lights when they walk!

  19. I don’t know who the bigger crybaby is. BooHoo Harbaugh or Ravens fans?? I guess the rule is why you BLEW two 14 point leads in the game???

  20. Seriously Tarbaugh? After BB took you to school on the rules one would think you would study instead of piss and moan SMH

  21. Harbaugh was complaining after that loss to NE that the ineligible receivers lined up on the outside were deceiving and should not be aloud.
    Welcome to football, John. This sport is all about deception. Quit crying all ready.

  22. What has happened to this team? They’ve gone from respected to a whining, crybaby team like the Colts. Please don’t consider hanging a “playoff participant” banner.

  23. I’d be embarrassed if I were a Ravens fan.

    But that embarrassment started long before this weak idea.

  24. How about Harbaugh just ask for a rule that requires the offensive team to tell his defense exactly what the play is before they run it.


    Go Pats!

  25. Gueez I thought I heard everything? I’d be embarrassed to even admit that I can’t coach defense to figure it out?

  26. I think i saw them do this in a pop warner game once but the players decided to stop doing it because they felt it was childish.

    This just proves that Harbaugh and his players are too dumb to remember who checked in 2 seconds ago as eligible. What an embarassment.

  27. They should have a new rule that when you submit a laughable rule like this one that you can’t suggest rules for at least 2 years.

  28. What because you’re not smart enough to listen to the call over the stadium speakers? “X player has reported as an eligible receiver”. Give me a break Harbaugh, how about you learn how to read formations instead of trying to dumb down the league cause it seems the Ravens are the only ones that complain about not being able to identify eligible/ineligible receivers.

  29. Harbaugh will never live down his meltdown in the 2014 divisional playoff games against the Patriots, his post game tantrum, his post game collusion with the Colts, and his team’s collapse in 2015.

  30. Can’t believe people are piling on Harbaugh for this! I don’t like him and his demeanor much (he’s such a whiney spaz) and I don’t like the proposal, but I understand why he’s making an issue of this. He’s been burned twice now.

  31. Harbaugh, just stop, please. Just accept that you were out coached by the Hoodie and move on.


    I think he admitted that the day he started using the ploy himself in games. They tried this more than once.

  32. Probably a good idea right now to bring up that 33 yard extra point that Gostkowski missed in the AFC championship. That changed Belicheck’s whole strategy in the fourth quarter at Denver. It cost them the game. Yup, so go on and enjoy your little ineligible/eligible receiver laugh. Meanwhile we’ll cherish remembering Belicheck’s big rule change idea was moving the “PAT” back. (you can take that two ways). Clearly proof that GOD exists and isn’t a Pats fan anymore!

  33. Sounds good. Everyone has to count to 3 mississippi before rushing Flacco, also.

  34. I’ve never understood why anyone lined up at an eligible receiver position isn’t automatically eligible. There’s no need to report and no need to wear a bib. If trained officials and professional players can’t spot a 300 pound receiver then they need to retire immediately.

  35. I was at that Pats-Ravens playoff game. For gosh sakes the refs were announcing to the entire stadium who was eligible . Ravens were the only clueless people out of 65,000

  36. You can’t take it from the above loser Washingtron to make an honest statement. No place in the country can top DC for lying, ignorant, overpaid people that produce nothing except waste, including their sports franchises.

  37. Maybe they could make the player stick a propeller beanie on top of their helmet. Harbaugh still might not be able to coach up his team to understand the rule, but it would be funny to watch..

  38. Well, when the refs can’t even recognize who is eligible and eligible (i.e. Urschel) something should probably be done. Or, let’s forget about numbers and just let ’em play like a back yard pick-up game. You’ll just have to add another minute to the play clock so that defenses have a chance to recognize the formation and adjust accordingly. Or be prepared for 63 to 49 game scores.

    There’s a reason the jerseys are specifically numbered.

  39. Once, there were no laws regarding stealing. Until somebody stole something. Patriots fans would call that thief a “genius” for getting something for nothing, claiming “no laws were broken” and the victim “stupid” for not securing their property.

    The lesson being – just because it isn’t against the rules – doesn’t make it right. Behavior like that is why we have to have “product is hot and could cause burns” printed on coffee cups and they the NFL rule book is as thick as a phone book.

  40. I cant believe the NFL has come to this. Put on pinnies like QBs do in practice. Are you freaking kidding me Harbaugh? Really? I bet that he lost a bet and had to propose this…this cant be real. A pinnie on eligible players. What a complete joke. Id love to be in the room to hear that one…when everyone just laughs at him. Wow

  41. Some said:

    The lesson being – just because it isn’t against the rules – doesn’t make it right.

    It is called creative thinking – the same type of formation was used by the Titans – and no one complained

  42. “There’s a reason the jerseys are specifically numbered.”
    Yeah, and has already been established, it’s to help coaches like Coach Clueless determine who is eligible and who isn’t (even though typical Pop Warner teams can figure it based on the formation).
    “Behavior like that is why we have to have “product is hot and could cause burns” printed on coffee cups”
    Poor example. After all wasn’t it Coach Clueless who didn’t know what was and what wasn’t?

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