I remember last spring. I was sitting at a stop light in Akron, OH while listening to FOX Sports Radio. Two guys, whose names I do not remember, were on and explaining why they felt that the NFL was slowly creeping their way to having a college football type review system. Every play was going to be reviewed upstairs, because coaches want to coach football and not worry about whether to challenge this play, or not to challenge that one.
It made a lot of sense. I understand why the league would take those measures and change the system. Though football has been at the forefront of replay-review, the system could always be tweeked for the better. And if enough coaches felt that way I then far be it from me to demand they must make those calls.
Now that we have had back-to-back weeks in which an NFL coach has been penalized for challenging plays that were already in the reviewing progress, the NFL competition committee is expected to put this rule on top of their agenda in the coming spring.
Allow me to try to explain why the rule is in place.
Automatically reviewed play—> Throw challenge flag—> Unsportsmanlike Conduct—-> Negates review because it is considered a ‘play’.
The idea here is that after a penalty (in any case) reviewing a play is not allowed unless you are challenging the ruling on the field. Because a penalty was called on the coach for throwing the flag, it takes away the right to review.
It’s a bad rule. It’s a rule that was created to deter coaches from showing up the official. It’s not only a bad rule, but it’s a failed rule.
Bringing up the competition committee again, it would serve the game well if instead of tweeking the rules to progress the slow evolution to college football, they would fast forward it to it.
In all accounts, CFB has it right. It is time for the NFL to realize this (I believe they already have) and make their move. Review every play and allow the replay official access inside the game. Allow coaches a couple challenges so they can also stop the game if they feel they have been wronged.
It will not affect the pace of the game much. Most plays are well officiated. It would, on extreme occasions, add fifteen minutes to a game It would be worth it.
And I maybe the only one here, but any time you can extend a football game so I don’t have to go back to real life is a good extension.