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  • Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

    Tuck rule gone, helmet rule approved

    Updated: March 20, 2013, 3:14 PM ET
    By John Clayton and Adam Schefter | ESPN.com

    PHOENIX -- NFL owners went into a speed voting mode before concluding their winter meeting in Phoenix on Wednesday, voting to eliminate the tuck rule, penalize crown of the helmet hits by players who are outside of the tackle box or at least three yards downfield and change the replay challenge rule so that a bad coaches' challenge doesn't prevent officials from reviewing the play.

    The tuck rule change had only one dissenting vote, the Pittsburgh Steelers. The New England Patriots and Washington Redskins abstained, but the remaining 29 teams, including the Oakland Raiders, voted to end the rule, a call that cost the Raiders a chance to go to the Super Bowl in 2001.

    Tom Brady was the famous beneficiary of the rule in that 2001 playoff game between the Patriots and the Raiders. A ball that appeared to be a Brady fumble was ruled an incomplete pass, and the Patriots went on to win the game.

    Now, if a quarterback starts to bring the football back toward his body while trying to throw, it will be ruled a fumble instead of an incomplete pass.

    "We didn't think it was necessary to make that change," Steelers president Art Rooney said. "We were happy with the way it's been called."

    The Raiders celebrated the tuck rule's demise with a three-word tweet: "Adios, Tuck Rule."

    The most debate came with the crown of the helmet hits rule, which will affect running backs the most. As of Tuesday, the competition committee felt as though it was only one vote away from passing. After further discussion, the vote was 31-1 with the Cincinnati Bengals voting against.

    It will now be a 15-yard penalty if a player who is more than three yards downfield or outside of the tackle box delivers a blow with the crown of his helmet. If the offensive and defensive player each lowers his head and uses the crown of the helmet to make contact, each will be penalized.

    "It'll certainly make our runners aware of what we expect relative to use of the helmet," Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said. "One of the questions I ask a lot is who gains from this, offense or defense? And it's a toss-up as to which side of the ball has the advantage on this rule, if any. The main thing is it's pro-health and safety, and that's the big thing."

    The owners discussed simply using fines on ball carriers to eliminate the tactic but instead voted to make the rule change.

    "Jim Brown never lowered his head," Rooney said with a smile. "It can be done."

    Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte, who called rule proposal "absurd" Sunday on Twitter, reacted to the rule's adoption with similar disdain in a series of tweets Wednesday.

    "Wow so they really passed that rule...last time I checked football was a contact sport. Calling bank now to set up my lowering the boom fund," he wrote.

    He followed that up with: "Next year they'll probably be a no jumping over defenders rule... #loweringtheboomfund" and "Guess I'll get my fine money ready."

    St. Louis Rams coach Jeff Fisher, co-chairman of the league's competition committee, said the rule doesn't prohibit a runner from using his facemask or hairline part of his helmet.

    Commissioner Roger Goodell was eager to get the helmet rule approved, and there was talk the vote would be tabled until May if the rule change didn't have enough support.

    But after watching videos of the play that clearly showed the differences in legal and illegal moves by ball carriers, the owners voted yes -- and then applauded the decision, something Fisher said is "rare."

    "We had discussions with the players association and the players themselves, the coaches' subcommittee," Fisher said. "A lot of people talked to us about this rule and how to roll it out in our game."

    Owners easily passed a change in the replay challenge rule that fixes a problem when coaches challenge a play that would be automatically reviewed in the replay booth. Under the new rule, a coach who challenges such a play is charged a timeout when he throws a challenge flag. If the play is overturned, the coach gets back the challenge. It remains a 15-yard penalty if a coach challenges a booth reviewable play.

    Under the previous rule, if a coach challenged a reviewable play, there would be a 15-yard penalty and no review.

    The only proposal that was tabled was whether to open the regular season as early as Wednesday. The NFL likes to open the regular season on the Thursday before the regular Sunday opener, and it likes to have the Super Bowl winner have a home game on that night.

    The Baltimore Orioles have a home game Thursday, Sept. 5, and Major League Baseball appears to be unwilling to alter the time to a day game to allow the Baltimore Ravens to play that night.

    On Tuesday, the NFL voted to prohibit teams from loading more than six defenders on one side of the snapper on extra points and field goals along with giving a 15-yard penalty if a blocker does a peel-back block inside the tackle box. The peel-back rule applies mostly to screen passes and rollouts.

  • #2
    Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

    It will now be a 15-yard penalty if a player who is more than three yards downfield or outside of the tackle box delivers a blow with the crown of his helmet. If the offensive and defensive player each lowers his head and uses the crown of the helmet to make contact, each will be penalized.
    What a mess this is going to be.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

      Nobody will watch football 10 years from now if they keep doing what they are doing

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

        Originally posted by jmk321 View Post
        Nobody will watch football 10 years from now if they keep doing what they are doing
        I will. Guess I'll have good seats.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

          No tuck rule, no Patriots Superbowl! Sickening!!!!!
          sigpic :ram::helmet:

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

            Completely reasonable changes imo.

            The tuck rule sucked and needed to go.

            As for the helmet - isn't a weapon. It's to protect players from the concussions that they want to sue the NFL for. If the defense can't lead with the helmet then the offense shouldn't be allowed to either. Players say the NFL doesn't care about safety then gripe about rules changes. Use your shoulders like you're supposed to - like they've been doing since the game was created.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

              Originally posted by DE_Ramfan View Post
              As for the helmet - isn't a weapon. It's to protect players from the concussions that they want to sue the NFL for. If the defense can't lead with the helmet then the offense shouldn't be allowed to either. Players say the NFL doesn't care about safety then gripe about rules changes. Use your shoulders like you're supposed to - like they've been doing since the game was created.
              The owners obviously agree with you, but getting players to stop doing what they have instinctively done to protect themselves from day one is going to be a long, difficult process. Where the shoulders go, the head goes. The officials are going to have a tough time as well trying to differentiate between using the "crown of the helmet", which is illegal, and using the "hairline of the helmet" (just below the crown) which is legal.

              Like I said earlier, IMO it's going to be a mess.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

                Originally posted by r8rh8rmike View Post
                The owners obviously agree with you, but getting players to stop doing what they have instinctively done to protect themselves from day one is going to be a long, difficult process. Where the shoulders go, the head goes. The officials are going to have a tough time as well trying to differentiate between using the "crown of the helmet", which is illegal, and using the "hairline of the helmet" (just below the crown) which is legal.

                Like I said earlier, IMO it's going to be a mess.
                It will certainly be a mess until they establish some consistency in how they call the penalty. Seems like the problem is players are being taught to square their shoulders and charge ahead instead of turning their body to deliver a shot with their shoulder.

                As far as differentiating between the crown and hairline I think we're going to see flags being thrown if the ball carriers face mask is parallel to the ground when contact is made. If they're looking forward the intent probably isn't to scramble someone's brain.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

                  pain is a very important learning tool for the body, if an action causes pain, the body will try not to do that again
                  if this feeling is blocked, the body won't learn not to do it, which is where the spear heading is coming from, and bad tackling in general

                  you CAN'T stop the brain rattling around in the head from tackles in the nfl
                  not to mention that these helmets and pads cause more force to be applied anyway as opposed to something like rugby

                  nfl career: 3 years average
                  rugby: 13ish or so
                  australian football: about 18-20 years

                  the nfl uses a ton of pads, the other two do not, some use a small helmet, or don't at all and learn to tackle correctly and are able to take a hit naturally

                  if you tried spearing someone with your head without a helmet...well...don't know if you'd get a second shot

                  the last couple years of the leather helmets were perfect, guys playing during that transition phase will tell you that the plastic helmets sucked, air doesn't do crap either

                  point is, better tackling will come by a lesser amount of pads, and don't pull the "the NFL is too brutal man" argument
                  the pads don't really protect, they really don't

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

                    Originally posted by r8rh8rmike View Post
                    The owners obviously agree with you, but getting players to stop doing what they have instinctively done to protect themselves from day one is going to be a long, difficult process. Where the shoulders go, the head goes. The officials are going to have a tough time as well trying to differentiate between using the "crown of the helmet", which is illegal, and using the "hairline of the helmet" (just below the crown) which is legal.

                    Like I said earlier, IMO it's going to be a mess.
                    Therein lies the rub. "Instinctively". I couldn't agree more. Design better helmets, but the game is what it is - violent. Players accept that there is the possibility of injury from highschool all the way through. Hopefully this "new rule" goes the way of the "tuck" rule ..

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

                      Originally posted by laram0 View Post
                      No tuck rule, no Patriots Superbowl! Sickening!!!!!
                      Hmmm a rule only used once in its history and never used since and is now discarded??! Cheatriots FTL!!!!!!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by citr92 View Post

                        nfl career: 3 years average
                        rugby: 13ish or so
                        australian football: about 18-20 years

                        the nfl uses a ton of pads, the other two do not, some use a small helmet, or don't at all and learn to tackle correctly and are able to take a hit naturally

                        if you tried spearing someone with your head without a helmet...well...don't know if you'd get a second shot

                        the last couple years of the leather helmets were perfect, guys playing during that transition phase will tell you that the plastic helmets sucked, air doesn't do crap either

                        point is, better tackling will come by a lesser amount of pads, and don't pull the "the NFL is too brutal man" argument
                        the pads don't really protect, they really don't
                        Interesting points!

                        Leather helmets and less pads. I'd certainly like to see that with today's athletes.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

                          Originally posted by ZiaRam View Post
                          Hmmm a rule only used once in its history and never used since and is now discarded??! Cheatriots FTL!!!!!!
                          Actually, this rule has been used several times. In most that I have seen, they have been pretty legitimate rulings. Capt Kurt and the RAMS actually benefitted from it once, and I believe both Bulger and Bradford have also. The only one I saw that was blantantly incorrect was the cheatriots and Raiders, and it is probably why there is so much outrage against this ruling.


                          gap

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Tuck Rule Gone, Helmet Rule Approved

                            Originally posted by HornyRam View Post
                            Interesting points!

                            Leather helmets and less pads. I'd certainly like to see that with today's athletes.
                            also considering the price of leather i'm sure they'd have some cheaper alternative,

                            ...
                            ...
                            ...
                            ...

                            gosh dang it I came on here to say something else but i forgot :/

                            edit: it's not all what i wanted to say but i do remember that i wanted to add that the short time i played football...i could never get used to the rattling of the pads and helmets...yet i can play rugby all day
                            Last edited by citr92; -03-24-2013, 11:15 AM.

                            Comment

                            Related Topics

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                            • r8rh8rmike
                              'Tuck Rule": NFL Could Eliminate Controversial Call
                              by r8rh8rmike
                              'Tuck Rule': NFL could eliminate controversial call

                              By Gregg Rosenthal
                              Around The League Editor
                              Published: March 14, 2013 at 03:21 p.m.

                              The NFL Competition Committee held a conference call Thursday to go over possible rule change proposals that will be discussed at the NFL Annual Meeting, which starts Sunday in Phoenix.

                              One item on the agenda is sure to be cheered by Oakland Raiders fans, although the notion probably will be seen as too little, too late.

                              The NFL will propose to eliminate "The Tuck Rule."

                              The change would make it so a player loses possession when he tries to bring the ball back to his body. (Yes, then Tom Brady's play should have been ruled a fumble in that case.) If the passer loses control while the ball is going forward, it's still incomplete. If he loses the ball while tucking, it's a fumble.

                              This is a rule that never made a lot of sense to us in the first place. We're not sure why it took more than a decade after the Patriots-Raiders divisional-round playoff game after the 2001 season for this rule to change.

                              Other proposals included:

                              The league would change the rules regarding illegally throwing the challenge flag. This is in response to last season's Thanksgiving game, in which a Houston Texans touchdown could not be reviewed after Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz illegally throw a flag. Moving forward, the play still would be reviewed no matter what. Any coach who illegally challenges a play would be charged a timeout. He wouldn't get the timeout back even if he wins the challenge. If the team is out of timeouts, it would be charged a 15-yard penalty.

                              Call this the "Jim Schwartz Rule." It's a no-brainer.

                              The league would allow H-backs to wear uniform numbers 40 through 49.

                              The league also will propose three player health and safety rules. They include eliminating low blocks when offensive players are going toward their own end lines in the tackle box. One other proposal includes not allowing a runner to initiate contact with the crown of his helmet when outside the tackle box. This is sure to be a hot topic.

                              NFL owners will vote on these proposals, among other more minor ones, at the annual meeting.
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                            • Nick
                              NFL makes significant change to tackling rules
                              by Nick
                              NFL institutes 15-yard penalty, possible ejection for lowering head to make hit
                              8:32 PM ET
                              Kevin Seifert

                              ORLANDO, Fla. -- NFL owners passed an unexpected rule Tuesday that will expand penalties for helmet-to-helmet contact, one that is more significant and far-reaching than the NCAA's targeting rule.

                              Under the change, a player will be penalized 15 yards and potentially ejected any time he lowers his head to initiate and make contact with his helmet against an opponent. It will apply to tacklers, ball carriers and even linemen, and it will take the place of a previous rule that limited the penalty to contact with the crown of the helmet.

                              The NCAA's targeting rule penalizes players only when they hit opponents who are in a defenseless position. It calls for mandatory ejections, but the NFL's competition committee has not yet addressed how ejections would be adjudicated, according to chairman Rich McKay. There is little doubt, however, that the NFL is determined to aggressively address a 2017 season that included 291 concussions, its highest total on record, and a severe spine injury to Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier on a play that would fall under the new rule.

                              "It just seems that players at every level are getting more comfortable playing with their helmets as a weapon rather than a protective device," McKay said. "Therefore, we need a rule that is broad and puts that in context, and that's what we think this does."

                              Players, coaches and fans were left guessing on how the rule will impact the game. NFL Players Association president Eric Winston took to Twitter to share his thoughts.



                              According to NFL research, nearly one out of every two helmet-to-helmet hits caused a concussion in 2017. That's up from a ratio of one out of every three in 2015. NFL chief medical officer Allen Sills said in February that the current concussion data had sparked a "call to action," and on Tuesday he said this rule would be a key part of reducing head injuries in 2018.

                              "We spoke previously this year of having an all-time high of concussions," Sills said. "And we said that wasn't acceptable, and that we would respond to this, and this was part of the response. This is a very key component of the injury-reduction strategy on how we can reduce concussions immediately."

                              The competition committee initially planned to make lowering the helmet a 2018 point of emphasis rather than a rule change, McKay said. But after a leaguewide discussion Tuesday, owners instructed McKay to convert it to language that could be added to the rule book immediately. The league called a late-afternoon news conference and acknowledged that some parts of the rule still must be fleshed out.

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                            • r8rh8rmike
                              Owners Pass Numerous Rule Changes
                              by r8rh8rmike
                              By John Clayton
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                              Apparently, the NFL is serious about putting safety first at this year's owners meeting.

                              Owners passed four safety proposals Tuesday morning, a full day before they normally pass any rules involving action on the field. In past meetings, owners usually wait until Wednesdays to debate and vote on rule changes involving the game. The Competition Committee makes its annual report to owners on Monday, giving supporters or opponents an extra day to lobby for votes.

                              When it came to safety this year, there was apparently no debate. Starting this fall, the NFL is going to outlaw the "wedge" on kickoffs, stop the bunching of players on onside kicks, protect blockers from a helmet-to-helmet hit from the blindside and save receivers from forearm or shoulder hits to the head when they appear to be defenseless.

                              "We're trying to make the game safer for the guy getting hit and the guy doing the hitting," said officiating director Mike Pereira, who plans to retire this year.

                              The safety change for the onside kick may seem to be a minor adjustment, but it became more important when the Competition Committee watched tape of violent collisions on onside kicks.

                              In recent years, the league has tried to make onside kicks safer. Special teams coaches, however, found ways around those changes to group more players in smaller areas to gain an advantage. Under the new rule, players on the kickoff team will be spaced accordingly. First, at least four players of the kicking team must be on each side of the kicker. Second, at least three players must be lined up outside each inbounds line, including one who must be outside the yard-line number.

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                              I understand Goodell and crew have been active in trying to keep game length under 3 hours. This proposed rule seems to support that mindset. But, if an offense is in control of the ball and trying to score at the end of half or end of game... should they be penalized for sacrificing a down to stop the clock?

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