Jack Del Rio weighs in on fumble-touchback rule: 'Fix that outdated rule'

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Ryan Homler
·2 min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Jack Del Rio on fumble-touchback rule: 'Fix that outdated rule' originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

One of the most controversial rules in the sport of football is that if an offensive player fumbles the ball prior to crossing the goal line, and that ball then goes out of bounds in the end zone, the result is a touchback for the opposing team.

On Sunday in the AFC Divisional Round matchup between the Kansas City Chiefs and Cleveland Browns, it reared its head once again.

In the final minutes of the second quarter, Browns wide receiver Rashard Higgins reached toward the pylon but had the ball knocked loose. It ended a crucial possession for Cleveland and allowed Kansas City to regain possession in a 22-17 win. 

Twitter immediately exploded with takes on the ruling, and among those not in favor was Washington defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio.

Del Rio's opinion would land in the majority of how the public feels about this type of play and designation. It's something that incentivizes a player not stretching toward the goal line to gain an extra yard and potentially six points while implementing one of the strictest possible penalties there is.

A fumble out of bounds at any other point on the field doesn't change anything as possession remains with the offense, Yet here, the team loses the ball and the other team gets it with a touchback. 

For the Browns, it was a play that made a huge difference in a close contest. It appears that Del Rio and others are hoping it changes in the future.