The Press Box Sports

NFL Overtime Rule Changes are a Bad Idea

Former Navy football coach Eddie Erdelatz is credited for coining the phrase “A tie is like kissing your sister.” Apparently, NFL officials must really like their sisters given the solution that they came up with in regards to overtime games. The NFL has needed to reevaluate it’s overtime system for years and now it looks like they’re going to do just that. The problem is that they’re going in the wrong direction. NFL owners are expected to approve a proposal that would change the overtime quarter from fifteen minutes to ten minutes. While it may mean very little changes in the outcome of games, the potential is there for more ties. And every fan hates ties.

Fans don’t watch football games to see a tie, they watch football games to see their team win. Changes like this are an example of why the NFL is losing ratings and becoming less popular. it seems the NFL is doing everything in their power to keep the game less exciting. That’s why college football is taking over as the most popular between the two.  The NCAA eliminated ties in football games just before the 1996 season and now every game produces a winner. Not in the NFL though. Fans still have to grind through an extra quarter of football where the outcome still could turn into a tie.

Granted that NFL games have only resulted in five tied football games since 2012, the new rules will likely increase those chances. A team has possession in an NFL overtime game for a rough average of four and a half minutes. If no one scores within ten minutes, you’re going to see more footbal games end in a tie.

The NFL proposed the overtime change in hopes of making the game more exciting and that could happen with the logic that teams will be playing less conservative knowing that there’s less time to go for the win. The problem there is that the majority of overtime games in the NFL come from a defensive battle where the offense just can’t move the ball. So while some games still could provide an exciting overtime finish, look for more NFL games to result in a tie if the owners approve the proposal.

The NFL seems to keep falling short of making games more exciting. Many of their ideas has fans and even some players scratching their heads. The NFL is still great and fun to watch, but decisions like the overtime changes are only going to cause the NFL to lose some the fan base.

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