Next week the NFL will discuss possible rules changes during league meetings. While it is rumored that one of the changes will be that no one is allowed to mention the name Johnny Manziel ever again, one of the more interesting – and real – proposals is being sponsored by your favorite team, the Seattle Seahawks. That proposed change is to allow teams to challenge penalties. Go Pete!
Currently scoring plays, turnovers, catches (that’s assuming anyone on the field or in New York knows what a catch is) and the spot of the ball can be challenged by the coach. The proposed rule change, cosponsored by the Buffalo Bills, would allow coaches to also challenge any penalty call.
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Don’t freak out; this doesn’t mean that coaches can or will challenge every questionable call. The change would not add to the current number of challenges; coaches will still have just two challenges per game. So there won’t be a veritable flock of red flags in the air.
I like the proposal. I’m pretty sure Pete Carroll likes it too, as the Hawks were in the upper fourth of teams penalized, and the lowest quarter of those that penalties were committed against. Coach Carroll has ample reason to want that red flag in his hand when the officials throw the yellow.
It won’t make the game take any longer, as now the interminable review process will be on that holding call, instead of that catch by Angry Doug that wasn’t a catch – but was a catch three weeks ago by OBJ, and will be again in two weeks by the most excellent Quintorris Lopez Jones.
Early word is this change has no more chance of passing than when the New England Patriots proposed it. To me, it’s just another way to hold referees accountable, and improve the game. Like, maybe challenge a certain terrible holding call in January that wiped out an 80 yard punt return. Not saying it would have changed the NFC representative to that Big Game – but it would have. Seahawks aren’t the bird of prey that gives up 25 point leads, either. Just sayin’.
Now, about that proposal to ban the name Johnny Manziel…
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