Every year the NFL decides to implement new rules to improve the safety, entertainment or overall quality of their product. This might be something as trivial as the number positions are allowed to wear or something as vital as criteria for a catch. Now that we’re over a quarter of the way through the season (yikes), there’s enough of a sample size that we can make some judgements and suggest new rules that would be perfect for the good of the game.
Require Every Field to be Artificial Turf
Nothing is uglier than natural grass starting to get torn up and look muddy. Do you remember when the Raiders had a baseball diamond for most of the season? Have you seen Soldier Field after a little bit of rain? You can’t claim to be the highest level of football and then run around on a middle school practice field. The only reasonable solution is to have beautiful rubber and turf in every stadium right away.
Make the Footballs Bigger
Baseball fans should be familiar with this one, as their sport has been going through a resurgence for one key rule change: larger bases. Following the same logic, how much better would the NFL be if the ball was larger? Not only would it pop better on TV, but it would also emphasize a key skill, running the ball. In a league that has become plagued by passing and scoring, let’s get back to the roots of the game.
Bonus Points/Deductions for Touchdown Celebrations
I’m thinking a system similar to dance or gymnastics. Everyone is sick of the No Fun League sending massive fines to players for dancing, only to then use them in every promotion. Why don’t we lean the other way and reward players for providing the best part of the game? You could have the on-field officials award these points but I think a “Dancing with the Stars”-esque panel would be more appropriate. My picks: Michael Strahan, Antonio Brown, and Simon Cowell.
Have Referees Openly Bet on Participating Teams
As we learned in the Vikings/Chiefs ending, this is clearly already a standard practice. Why not make it more interesting and have it out in the open? Draft Kings run 35 promos with live odds but we can’t find out if the referee has a same-game parlay going on the Niners? This is a massive marketing opportunity that the league needs to capitalize on.
You’re Allowed to Rough the Passer (Twice)
Similar to using your challenges, this adds an entirely new dynamic of strategy to the game. Do you send the opposing QB flying on the opening drive or do you save it for a late-game situation when you need the tone to be clear? Alternatively, you could also allow the use of a timeout to avoid the penalty, similar to a delay of game.
If the NFL really does care about the good of the game, then I hope they implement these new rules to keep things moving into the future.
Former wrestler, Current football watcher, Future president.
Alter-Ego of the Packer Punisher.