NFL to create new teaching video on helmet rule

Getty Images

It remains to be seen whether Wednesday’s discussion regarding the new rule against lowering the helmet results in any changes to the rule. However things play out tomorrow, the league eventually will be providing more specific information about what it and isn’t allowed.

Chris Mortensen of ESPN reports that the NFL will prepare an “updated video tutorial that will be distributed to game officials, coaches and players once the final preseason games are played and in time for teams preparing for their regular-season openers.”

The league previously disseminated a series of videos prepared by five NFL coaches, targeting specific positions. Chargers coach Anthony Lynn addressed running backs. Jaguars coach Doug Marrone handled offensive line. Falcons coach Dan Quinn dealt with defensive line play. Titans coach Mike Vrabel looked at linebackers. And Jets coach Todd Bowles did defensive backs.

I’ve watched each of them. Although they have yet to be rated by Rotten Tomatoes, one league source who has extensive knowledge of the manner in which the rule was passed and the way it has been enforced said, “I hated them.”

There’s nothing wrong with the videos from a technical standpoint. The coaches do a nice job of showing what the league is trying to do, when it comes to removing the helmet from the game. The objection to the videos comes from the fact that the league is trying to do so much more than simply eliminate the use of the helmet as a weapon.

Watch the videos, the links to which are embedded above. They emphasize a linear posture, with the back flattened and the helmet down. Once the player assumes that specific body alignment, the foul happens if it initiates contact with an opponent, with the rule assuming that the player intended to use the helmet as a weapon.

Remember when NFL executive V.P. of football operations Troy Vincent proclaimed that the league had watched 40,000 plays and only three potential ejections under the new rule were identified? That talking point helped fuel the buy-in from coaches, glossing over the reality that, of those 40,000 snaps, there would have been a lot more than only three flags thrown.

That’s why coaches are frustrated. They were told one thing, and something else has been happening. The problem is that what’s happening meshes with what the rule says, and that unless the powers-the-be (as we understand it, the Management Council) are willing to adjust the language of the rule, what the rule says is what the rule will be: No lowering of the helmet to initiate and make contact, with no limitation as to the portion of the helmet that can strike an opponent, no requirement that the blow be forcible, no exception for incidental helmet contact, no exemption for tackles that happen from the side, and no allowance for replay review to assist the officials who are trying to figure this all out in real time.

54 responses to “NFL to create new teaching video on helmet rule

  1. Just go play flag football already.

    If the league hadn’t been so intent on denying the effects of concussions and when they knew of it, this ridiculousness would have never begun.

    The players NOW KNOW the risks, and signing contracts is an implied agreement of such moving forward (thereby insulating the league from future lawsuits). But trying to legislate every piece of hard contact or incidental contact in the head and neck area — like that silly penalty against the Colts early in last night’s game — is absurd.

  2. I’m sure this will be as enlightening and effective as the videos I used to have to watch when I worked at a Hollister Co. back in my glory days. You know, the one where you catch the pro shoplifters red-handed but just have to politely suggest a pair of flip-flops to go with those jeans they just “selected” so they can’t sue you. Just lmao.

  3. When I saw that Viking running back lower his head and completely truck stick some cornerback, then the cornerback get flagged for lowering his head, it solidified what I already knew.

    This rule is a complete joke. Just get rid of it and admit it was a huge mistake.

  4. It’s impossible to make a tackle on a person who lowers their head to brace for a tackle without the tackler lowering their head too, when the body lowers itself the head and shoulders naturally will be lowered too. I get the intent of the rule but the implementation of how it is worded is dumb.

  5. If it takes multiple videos to explain a new rule and then they should probably just show a video of a dumpster on fire…

  6. Its pretty obvious what the league is trying to do, they are trying to get rid of shoulder tackling so they can implement some form of flag to swipe off a persons body.

  7. Maybe if they had not stopped enforcing the old “spearing” rule, which was passed in the late 1970s (!!!) then maybe this wouldn’t have happened. Why not just make the spearing rule a point of emphasis?

  8. Outside of the League doing the right thing, which is never, the only way this rule is repealed is if this rule ends up benefiting the Patriots. The league will change it if that happens.

  9. What team get’s screwed out of a win by this rule first?

    I guarantee that when this rule inevitably affects the outcome of a playoff game, the you-know-what will hit the fan.

  10. Has anyone else noticed that as football falls so does western civilization? Save football, save society. Abolish the new rules. Make Football Violent Again. Football is a microcosm of America.

  11. The video will clearly detail how the rule will be used to shift momentum whenever pesky small market teams come close to beating the league’s “chosen ones.”

  12. You need to stop calling out the league and management committee or whoever made this rule, like they are some unknowable entity. There are real people who made this rule and they need to be called out by name. Thats the only way we will get change. Letting them hide behind their committee name will insure that nothing happens.

  13. The people who made the rule should put on pads and helmets then get on the field to tackle each other in real-time at full speed while keeping it legal. That’s the video I want to see.

  14. I can see it now – all of those studious football players sitting in the film room ready to absorb this new information.

  15. Connor Adams says:
    August 21, 2018 at 10:43 am
    What team get’s screwed out of a win by this rule first?

    I guarantee that when this rule inevitably affects the outcome of a playoff game, the you-know-what will hit the fan.

    1 0 Rate This

    ——————————–

    Is this a serious question? Obviously it’s the Pats. Did you watch the Super Bowl? Even the AFC Title game was creepy with that Dion Lewis “fumble” which was clearly not a fumble, as the replay showed firm possession of the ball to the ground.

    The whole reason why Goodell wants this so grey, is to be able to cheat and manipulate games even more.

  16. The tuck rule never existed until a game came along in which the nfl decided it was in their best interest for a particular team to win that game. 10 years later that rule was eliminated. We all knew a catch when we saw one for 100 years until the nfl decided it was in their best interest for a particular team to win that game. 2 years later that interpretation was eliminated. This rule is arbitrary enough and vague enough to change the outcome of any game without having to rely on circumstances. See this rule for what it is gentlemen.

  17. LMAO, the NFL is a complete joke. At this rate they will be lucky to still be in business in 5 years.

  18. SleightOfFoot says:
    August 21, 2018 at 11:03 am
    The tuck rule never existed until a game came along in which the nfl decided it was in their best interest for a particular team to win that game. 10 years later that rule was eliminated. We all knew a catch when we saw one for 100 years until the nfl decided it was in their best interest for a particular team to win that game. 2 years later that interpretation was eliminated. This rule is arbitrary enough and vague enough to change the outcome of any game without having to rely on circumstances. See this rule for what it is gentlemen.
    ————

    That’s all it has ever been about.

  19. tylawspick6 says:
    August 21, 2018 at 10:46 am
    Wait, Goodell lied again? No way!

    =====================================

    Gee – Tylaw w/ another conspiracy theory on Goodell. what a surprise….

  20. Great idea. I can see it now the day before the season opens…”Guys were are going to learn a new way to tackle. Forget about how you have been doing it your whole life. This is how we will do it.”

  21. The tuck rule never existed until a game came along in which the nfl decided it was in their best interest for a particular team to win that game.

    __________
    Shut up already. The rule did exist and was properly called. It was a terrible rule and has since been shelved. Get over it and stop your sobbing.

  22. Exapno Mapcase says:
    August 21, 2018 at 10:44 am
    The video will clearly detail how the rule will be used to shift momentum whenever pesky small market teams come close to beating the league’s “chosen ones.”
    ++++++++++++++++
    That has been going on in the AFC East since 2001 except they use pass interference.

  23. Here is a sneak peak of the script for the video.

    (NFL announcer to players) – Okay, the National Anthem has finished playing, you can now stand.

    (NFL players collectively) – Yo, man, we need to hit with our heads; you can’t be expectin’ us to go down for the struggle not using our heads.

    (NFL announcer to the players) – We’re are making this training video so that you know not to lead with your helmet either on the offensive or defensive side when making plays.

    (NFL player who finally lowered his fist) – Yo, I ain’t got time to figure out to use my head or not when making plays. I just wants to be on the highlights doing my thang and you can’t be expectin’ us to take you seriously with this new rule.

    (NFL announcer to player)- This rule was designed to prevent your brains from scramblin’ and you ending up committing suicide by age 50.

    (NFL player in response) – Seriously? The man will kill us way before CTE does.

    (NFL announcer turns to camera) – We are making football safer for our players to play the game. Don’t lower your head to make plays. We polled a bunch of 5th graders and they were able to tackle without lowering their head. This is so eezy peezy.

    (NFL players) – grumbles and murmurs of how this is designed to make black players slower so white players will look better.

  24. tqaztec says:
    August 21, 2018 at 11:02 am
    Good timing.

    ================================

    Yeah, this video should have been released months ago, when the rule change was first announced. Or at least prior to training camp opening so teams have as much time on the field as possible to get used to it. Putting the video out less than 3 weeks before the regular season begins guarantees that there will be controversial, game changing calls related to this rule.

  25. thesaint257 says:
    August 21, 2018 at 10:42 am
    Outside of the League doing the right thing, which is never, the only way this rule is repealed is if this rule ends up benefiting the Patriots. The league will change it if that happens.

    Well y havent they changed the rule then yet? Bc of the 2 scoring drives Brady had against the Eagles first team D, both were extended bc of this new penalty. He would have went 0 for 3 without it against Philly starters.

  26. It seems that a key to this is the attitude of the official. When he (or she) has the attitude of “I can’t wait to call everything that could possibly apply as a rule violation” you get bad calls, a sloppy game without flow or momentum, confused players, and a fan base that feels cheated. If the officials have the attitude of calling only what is a clear and obvious violation of the rules the players are protected, the game is protected, bad calls are minimized, and the level of whining goes way down.
    Perhaps we could try to fix that problem first?

  27. It’ll be just random clips of regular plays with question marks at the end of each play since absolutely nobody will be sure what the call would be.

  28. This will give license to the refs to decide the winner of each game. If there was ever a reason to boycott the NFL this is it.

  29. Will it be a double feature like the drive – in? We’ll start with the helmet video and follow up with the classic,what is a catch? Get the popcorn ready.

  30. These players are getting paid millions of dollars to play. These coaches are getting paid millions of dollars to coach. Certainly it is a reasonable expectation that they should be able to figure out how to play within the new rules. If not, there is nothing stopping them from retiring and moving onto the next career which I’m sure their educations paved the way for.

    Wanna play the old school, violent style of football? Stop blaming the league for not making it safe. Start blaming players like Thomas Davis, Danny Trevathan, Vontaze Burfict. They refuse to take care of their own, so now the NFL has to step in.

  31. I know! How bout someone create a new NFL. A professional football league where they actually play football the way it’s meant to be played.

  32. grant35 says:
    August 21, 2018 at 11:15 am
    tylawspick6 says:
    August 21, 2018 at 10:46 am
    Wait, Goodell lied again? No way!

    =====================================

    Gee – Tylaw w/ another conspiracy theory on Goodell. what a surprise….

    ——————————

    How is what we’re actually witnessing as NFL customers a “conspiracy theory”??? It’s what is happening!

    You people are so dumb.

  33. Shouldn’t the video be made BEFORE they institute the rule?! This is the most mismanaged organization I’ve seen since the 3 Stooges!

  34. Why in the world Did it take this long? Not agreeing with the changes but players and coaches should have had access to this month’s ago. You can’t expect players to change at the drop of a hat.they should have gone into training camp knowing this so they could have attempted to learn what the league expects.

  35. Carroll Prescott says:
    August 21, 2018 at 11:27 am
    Here is a sneak peak of the script for the video.

    (NFL players) – grumbles and murmurs of how this is designed to make black players slower so white players will look better.

    ———–

    Did you have a head injury as a child?

  36. And I thought the fact that all I saw on Sundays in the 10 am time slot was commercials as I flipped back and forth between CBS and Fox was close to the tipping point…..

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!