The proposed alternative to onside kicks was not passed by NFL owners at their virtual league meeting on Thursday.
Tom Pelissero of NFL Media reports that the proposal to allow teams to try a fourth-and-15 play from their own 25-yard-line as a way to regain possession in lieu of an onside kick has been tabled. There will be further discussion on the proposal in the future, which did not come up for a formal vote on Thursday.
Per Pelissero, an informal show of hands showed that the proposal would not have passed in such a vote.
PFT reported on Thursday that some opponents of the proposed change believed that it would lead to the elimination of the kickoff altogether. The NFL changed kickoff rules a couple of years ago with an eye toward player safety and some of them, particularly the inability for members of the coverage team to take a running start, have contributed to a drop in successful onside kicks when it’s obvious a team is going to try one.
A drop in comebacks meant less excitement late in some games, which was part of the reason why the alternative was proposed. For now, though, that excitement will have to come from other methods.