This week, the NFL made news during their annual owners’ meetings in Orlando by making some subtle changes to the rulebook. A tweak here and there, all of which are fairly good ideas, got everyone talking about how the game was adapting.
But in the end, none of the suggestions were revolutionary. None of them will cause much more than a minor bit of confusion early in the season as fans try to wrap their collective minds around the small adjustments.
There are, however, some rule changes that would make a big difference on the sport. There are some things that would go far beyond being just a tweak, which would improve the game immensely.
Here are 10 rule changes that the NFL should institute immediately:
10. Ban Kneeling at the End of the Game
At any other time during a game, a player isn’t down when their knee touches the ground; they have to be touched by a defender before the whistle blows. But for some reason, quarterbacks are allowed to kill time in the waning seconds by simply taking a knee, sometimes burning two full minutes. Instead, the league should make teams run an actual football play; it’d add some drama and lead to better finishes.
9. Eliminate the Lambeau Leap (and Similar Celebrations)
If the league is going to make it illegal for a player to dunk the basketball over the goalposts when they score a touchdown, then they should prohibit any post-score celebration, especially one that doesn’t take place on the playing field. It’s the height of hypocrisy that the NFL continually talks about reducing taunts and minimizing celebrations, but the Lambeau Leap remains okay in the league’s eyes.