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Thread: PFT: NFL vows lowering helmet rule will be “a substantial change” to the sport

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    One-armed Knife Sharpener Iamtdg's Avatar
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    PFT: NFL vows lowering helmet rule will be “a substantial change” to the sport

    NFL vows lowering helmet rule will be “a substantial change” to the sport
    Posted by Michael David Smith on March 29, 2018, 8:53 AM EDT

    How big a deal is the new NFL rule outlawing lowering the head to initiate contact with the helmet? A very big deal.

    Although we’re still waiting on specific examples of what is and is not a penalty, suffice to say that the penalty is going to make significant changes to the sport of football. The league office tells PFT that a USA Today report that the competition committee found fewer than 10 examples of plays from last year that would have been penalties under the new rule is incorrect. Instead, the league pointed us to comments from committee chair Rich McKay, who said the new rule will make a major difference.

    “It’s a substantial change,” McKay said. “Lowering their head, creating a different spine angle, and delivering a blow . . . we need to protect all players at all times and say that technique is not allowed. So if you lower your head to initiate contact and you initiate, it’s a foul. . . . It’s one of the most dangerous techniques there is, but yet we’ve allowed it to creep in and it’s now very prevalent. And we need to get it out. And we’re not going to get it out by saying, ‘We need to teach it better,’ we’re going to get it out by penalizing it.”

    McKay made clear that this is not just a rule that applies in certain situations, such as hits on defenseless receivers or quarterbacks. This rule applies to everyone: Offense and defense, receivers and safeties, blockers and pass rushers, ball carriers and tacklers. If you’re on the football field, you’re not allowed to lower your head to initiate contact with your helmet. If you do, you won’t be on the football field anymore.
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    Senior Member jsmith6919's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iamtdg View Post
    NFL vows lowering helmet rule will be “a substantial change” to the sport
    Posted by Michael David Smith on March 29, 2018, 8:53 AM EDT

    How big a deal is the new NFL rule outlawing lowering the head to initiate contact with the helmet? A very big deal.

    Although we’re still waiting on specific examples of what is and is not a penalty, suffice to say that the penalty is going to make significant changes to the sport of football. The league office tells PFT that a USA Today report that the competition committee found fewer than 10 examples of plays from last year that would have been penalties under the new rule is incorrect. Instead, the league pointed us to comments from committee chair Rich McKay, who said the new rule will make a major difference.

    “It’s a substantial change,” McKay said. “Lowering their head, creating a different spine angle, and delivering a blow . . . we need to protect all players at all times and say that technique is not allowed. So if you lower your head to initiate contact and you initiate, it’s a foul. . . . It’s one of the most dangerous techniques there is, but yet we’ve allowed it to creep in and it’s now very prevalent. And we need to get it out. And we’re not going to get it out by saying, ‘We need to teach it better,’ we’re going to get it out by penalizing it.”

    McKay made clear that this is not just a rule that applies in certain situations, such as hits on defenseless receivers or quarterbacks. This rule applies to everyone: Offense and defense, receivers and safeties, blockers and pass rushers, ball carriers and tacklers. If you’re on the football field, you’re not allowed to lower your head to initiate contact with your helmet. If you do, you won’t be on the football field anymore.
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    Senior Member mschmidt64's Avatar
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    This is just pandering.

    News flash, football is dangerous to your brain.

    If you don't want those risks, don't play. This idea that they are gonna do away with the one hit per month league wide that warrants an ejection, and that will save all these players from CTE, is nonsense.

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    Senior Member L.T. Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mschmidt64 View Post
    This is just pandering.

    News flash, football is dangerous to your brain.

    If you don't want those risks, don't play. This idea that they are gonna do away with the one hit per month league wide that warrants an ejection, and that will save all these players from CTE, is nonsense.
    I agree. The risks of playing football and incurring severe health hazards has been known for sometime but somehow the players or tules makers still are trying to find ways of relieving the responsibility of the severity of bad practices. You can make rules but you cannot make hell bent on hurting people type players change their habits. The only rule that has any chance of changing players mentality is a penalty system that will end your career in football if you don’t change your habits. Fines can only accomplish a limited change but the death penalty from the sport can change the attitudes.
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    Senior Member Bluestar71's Avatar
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    I guess from now on O and D linemen will have to stand straight up at the snap and shove each other instead of firing out. Maybe next year they'll legislate in the flags for ball carriers.

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    One-armed Knife Sharpener Iamtdg's Avatar
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    Senior Member 1bigfan13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mschmidt64 View Post
    This is just pandering.

    News flash, football is dangerous to your brain.

    If you don't want those risks, don't play. This idea that they are gonna do away with the one hit per month league wide that warrants an ejection, and that will save all these players from CTE, is nonsense.
    I don't even think this is about CTE. I think it's more about hits like the one that damn near paralyzed Ryan Shazier.

    My reasoning is this. CTE can be ignored from a public sense. The fans and general public can't see and react to it. Plus in cases dealing with CTE, it's largely a former player issue. By the time former players start experiencing severe symptoms they are usually long gone out of the league and largely forgotten about.

    Whereas in instances like the Shazier hit, that shit is scary and sobering to the general public because they saw it happen in real time and it was replayed dozens of times in the media. And as with most cases, leagues and organizations tend to react more swiftly when a negative byproduct of their sport has the national media's attention -- see the Ray Rice incident.

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    Senior Member ravidubey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iamtdg View Post
    No penalty on Zeke who was ducking an oncoming hit. Not sure about the defender either, as he was just going low.

    The point is to penalize lowering your head to deliver a shot.

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    One-armed Knife Sharpener Iamtdg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ravidubey View Post
    No penalty on Zeke who was ducking an oncoming hit. Not sure about the defender either, as he was just going low.

    The point is to penalize lowering your head to deliver a shot.
    He lowers his head to initiate contact. The way the rule is worded it very well could be called a penalty. That's how ambiguous this rule is. It's dumb.
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    Senior Member ravidubey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1bigfan13 View Post
    I don't even think this is about CTE. I think it's more about hits like the one that damn near paralyzed Ryan Shazier.
    Can you imagine if he was penalized on that play?

    I wonder if today’s defenders can even help themselves. They’ve learned since childhood to drive themselves through their opponent.

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