AAF plays its first overtime, giving NFL something to ponder

Michael David Smith
ProFootball Talk on NBC Sports

The NFL owners will vote this week on a proposal to change overtime by ensuring each team gets a possession, but the league hasn’t given much consideration to the more radical proposal of adopting a college-style overtime, in which teams alternate possessions.

That’s what the Alliance of American Football does, and on Sunday night, an AAF game went to overtime for the first time.

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In the AAF, teams alternate first-and-goal possessions from the 10-yard line. Each team gets one try at scoring a touchdown, no field goals are permitted, and teams scoring touchdown can try two-point conversions only, as the AAF has no extra point kicks.

On Sunday night, Birmingham went four-and-out on the first overtime possession, and Memphis then won the game with a touchdown pass on its possession. It made for an entertaining ending to a good game.

The alternating possessions style of overtime, which is used in high school, college, Canadian football and the AAF, hasn’t gained a lot of traction with the NFL, But the league ought to look at it. It makes for exciting endings.

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