Al Riveron: New helmet rule won’t lead to “ejection-fest”

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The impact of the NFL’s new rule regarding the use of the helmet will be closely watched once games start being played this year.

The rule bars players from lowering their heads to initiate contact and NFL officiating head Al Riveron was clear that it covers everyone on the field “from offensive linemen to safeties” when he spoke to Peter King for this week’s Football Morning in America column.

One aspect of the change is that a player can be ejected if he “lowers his head to establish a linear body posture prior to making contact with the head, has an unobstructed path to his opponent, and could have avoided contact.” Riveron does not believe the new rule will lead to an “ejection-fest,” but does expect it to be a trying transition at times.

“It’s not going to be easy,” Riveron said. “It’s a major change in our rules. We have to make sure the helmet is used only as a protective measure. But we have had zero resistance from the coaches.”

Resistance to a rule that’s going to be enforced wouldn’t make much sense unless a coach is trying to find ways to undermine his team. Fully understanding and implementing the changes players are going to have to make is going to be a process, however, and preseason games are likely to play a major role in it as everyone gets used to the new normal in the NFL.

1 responses to “Al Riveron: New helmet rule won’t lead to “ejection-fest”

  1. Just another rule that the officials will falter on. No ejections because no players will be left on field after half of game. To many rules.

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