PDA

View Full Version : New rules for the 2011 NFL Season



BlitzburghRockCity
08-06-2011, 09:43 AM
With the end of the lockout and with a new collective bargaining agreement in place, wholesale change has been implemented in the NFL. But aside from the contentious issues that were at the center of the lockout for several months, changes have been made to the NFL rulebook that will alter the way the game is played in an effort to, in the eyes of league officials, help protect the players.

The NFL has expanded its rules to prevent hits above the shoulders of "defenseless players" from defenders using the crown of their helmet, forearm, shoulder, or facemask. The league and its officials have changed what constitutes a defenseless player, extending the scope from just wide receivers to all players.

"Basically, what they're trying to do is take the helmet out of all hits, especially if you launch," NFL side judge Rick Patterson said. "They do not want any contact with a defenseless player anywhere, especially with a kicker, quarterback and the punter. They do not want the defender using a helmet as a weapon on a block." While some of the rules protecting players and banning hits with the helmet were in place before the changes, defenseless players now include the following -- players throwing a pass, a runner whose forward progress has been stopped by a tackler, players completing a catch without having time to avoid contact, kickers or punters during a kick or a return, a quarterback on a change of possession, and a player who receives a blindside block.

In an attempt to limit "launching," a 15-yard penalty will be enforced on any defender who leaves both feet before contact to spring forward into an opponent and delivering a blow using any part of his helmet.

Perhaps, the most controversial rule change, at least for the Steelers, is the one that allows the NFL to punish teams if their players commit multiple flagrant hits that result in fines, a rule that many have dubbed "the Pittsburgh Steelers Rule." Upon hearing the news of the rule changes in May, Steelers linebacker James Harrison tweeted, "I'm absolutely sure now after this last rule change that the people making the rules at the NFL are idiots."

Last season, Harrison was at the center of a debate over the nature of violent hits in the NFL. He was fined a total of $100,000 by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, including a $75,000 fine for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Cleveland Browns wide receiver Mohamed Massaquoi.

Patterson stressed that the new regulations are in place to ensure the welfare of the players, not to single out individual teams and players. "I'm not sure about the targeting question, so I don't know," he said. "I'm assuming [the Steelers] are just like any other team -- they're interested in safety and tackling the correct way and changing as the game changes."

Many of the other notable rule changes for the 2011 season center around kickoffs and replay. Kickoffs will be moved forward from the 30-yard line to the 35-yard line, while coverage teams are limited to a 5-yard running start before the kicker makes contact with the ball as opposed to the 10- to 15-yard start they used to get. Additionally, booth replay will be used to review all scoring plays.

While the new measures surrounding illegal hits and defenseless players have not been met with universal praise or acceptance around the NFL, officials insist that the amendments are necessary to protect players in a rapidly evolving game.
"The one thing I would say is our game is changing, players are changing, time is changing, and I think the league feels like they have to change with the times," Patterson said. "Whatever they implement, we'll go through with that.

From the PG (http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11218/1165666-66-0.stm#ixzz1UFgzqvOJ)

steelchamp204
08-06-2011, 10:00 AM
defenseless players now include the following -- players throwing a pass, a runner whose forward progress has been stopped by a tackler, players completing a catch without having time to avoid contact, kickers or punters during a kick or a return, a quarterback on a change of possession, and a player who receives a blindside block.


What a joke, this is going to be an interesting season

Raleigh Steel
08-06-2011, 10:28 AM
i've noticed they haven't changed the rule of holding, which still allows opposing tackles to put our rushing LB's in a sleeper hold....or the multiple late hits on ben, hits to ben's head, etc...

i would love to see the entire league do a 2 hand touch play on the first play of the first game. just to send a message.

Speeed
08-06-2011, 10:33 AM
This is maddening as a fan, I can't imagine what the players feel like.

I have echoed this before, there is zero culpability for the officials. They are even unsure of the rules as evidenced last year; many times there was no call whatsoever, even some resulting in injuries, and yet players would get fined after the fact.

Before players make a tackle they will have to take that split second to stop and contemplate the legality of a hit.This will be a game changer in that defensive hesitation could result in an offense player getting that split second they need to break away from a potential tackle.

Is there any language regarding a player who commits to a seemingly legal tackle but due to the dynamics of the play (an evasive move by the ball carrier, being jostled around, etc.) and ends up in a situation that seems like an illegal hit?

What sucks about the rules is that once they are in place, they will not be removed by the subsequent commissioner.

RIVERS OF STEEL
08-06-2011, 10:38 AM
All a player has to do to avoid the rules violations is just fall down on the ground and wait for the ref to blow his whistle 3 times signaling resumation of play. It would look like this. Immediately after the runner or ball carrier,s forward progress is stopped (indicated by a ref whistle twice) every player on the field of play will immediately fall to the ground where he stands at the two whistle warning and wait for the continuance of play indicated by three whistle blows by the ref. Is that perfectly clear. In other words, "the ref blows". Or, goodbye defense.

steelersbabex25
08-06-2011, 10:51 AM
All this means more opportunities for offensive players, which equals more scoring, which will eventually equal more emphasis on offense, and less on defense. Pretty much exactly what the NFL wants.

airbrake 1
08-06-2011, 11:21 AM
this is really starting to get silly....and wouldn't you hit someone harder if you stayed on your feet and drove through them using the ground as an anchor to put your entire body weight into the hit, like a boxer planting his feet to deliver a punch....i don't get the launching thing it would seem you would be losing energy the second you left your feet...but who know perhaps the laws of physics are relative...i think the game we all love may be in serious trouble in the near future

MattyVfromCT
08-06-2011, 11:41 AM
defenseless players now include the following -- players throwing a pass, a runner whose forward progress has been stopped by a tackler, players completing a catch without having time to avoid contact, kickers or punters during a kick or a return, a quarterback on a change of possession, and a player who receives a blindside block.


What a joke, this is going to be an interesting season

Ridiculous. Why even have pass rushers? The way this league is headed all game will be like the pro bowl. Pass rushers will stand there counting to 5 Mississippi before they are allowed to rush the qb and pull her tampon string to record a sack.........

Sent from my DROID2 GLOBAL using Tapatalk

BlitzburghRockCity
08-06-2011, 11:44 AM
All this means more opportunities for offensive players, which equals more scoring, which will eventually equal more emphasis on offense, and less on defense. Pretty much exactly what the NFL wants.

Pretty much, they don't want any defense, all they want to see is Arena league type scoring. If they could have a 53-47 score at the end of every game each week they'd be happy. It's disgusting! Football can no longer be a violent sport, just put them in some shorts and tshirt and let them play Goodell, atleast that way maybe they wouldn't sweat as much on the field too...can't have the multi million dollar players not getting a bruise or anything!

RIVERS OF STEEL
08-06-2011, 11:52 AM
The money finally got in the way.

steeldoc
08-06-2011, 11:59 AM
Aggressive teams are going to get jobbed and lose games because of these stupid penalties.

kgreen
08-06-2011, 03:59 PM
Pretty much, they don't want any defense, all they want to see is Arena league type scoring. If they could have a 53-47 score at the end of every game each week they'd be happy. It's disgusting! Football can no longer be a violent sport, just put them in some shorts and tshirt and let them play Goodell, atleast that way maybe they wouldn't sweat as much on the field too...can't have the multi million dollar players not getting a bruise or anything!

Those 53-47 games are less thrilling and/or nerve-racking than a game that ends in a score of 24-17. When there is a mix of offense AND defense in a game then there's more drama that much has always been certain in football. But when you know that your team or the opposing team is going to score then most of the drama is gone and it becomes Arena Football.

Take Super Bowl XLIII as an example. There were plenty of plays on both offense and defense to the point where you ACTUALLY wondered whther or nothe Steelers would score in the final seconds. Same with Super Bowl XLV. This truly is depressing man. I love defense and I will miss sacks and big hits. I was already sad enough when they got rid of Jacked Up on "Monday Night Countdown" and this is even worse.

They are essentially taking away a big part of what made football so appealing in the first place: the physicality. We are a violent race and football is a violent sport. With these new rules they are creating an imbalance in the universe. Which is stupid because with the way offensive evolution is going in football (more passing) there is more of a chance for these violent collisions. They mostly happen during the passing anyway. Numb skulls. I hope these rules blow up in their faces.

igor0190
08-06-2011, 04:05 PM
The NFL is interested in appealing to the average, casual fans who like scoring and offense and don't necissarily understand football. They could give two shits about the Steelers fans and those who love smash mouth defensive football. It's very UNfortunate indeed.

LarryNJ
08-07-2011, 04:46 AM
Although I agree that many rules have been implemented over the years to help the offense and increase scoring. I really believe that these were implemented to help protect the players from injuries but more so the owners from future lawsuits from ex players claiming negligence.

BlitzburghRockCity
08-07-2011, 11:42 AM
The money finally got in the way.

Did we ever think it wouldn't? :( The NFL does cater to the average fan, the person who comes to games or tunes in to watch the scoreboard be lit up. The true fans that love a defensive struggle as much as shootout, have to do the best we can. As long as teams like the Steelers are around though, with the old school, tough defense, physical natured mentality, we'll always have a chance to see the close games. I hope...

steelersbabex25
08-07-2011, 12:55 PM
Although I agree that many rules have been implemented over the years to help the offense and increase scoring. I really believe that these were implemented to help protect the players from injuries but more so the owners from future lawsuits from ex players claiming negligence.

How does not being able to block a quarterback during a change of possession protect them from injuries? They treat the quarterbacks of this league like they're faberge eggs. Are they not people just like everyone else that's getting blocked and run into on the field?

RIVERS OF STEEL
08-07-2011, 09:17 PM
How we gonna deal with the new Kick Off Return rule, does it matter and does anyone care? The new rules moves the KO out to the 35 yard line from the 30. Crappy kickers as well as the good ones should now be able to put the ball squarely deep in the oppents end zone. The returner ain't gonna take it to far in this circumstance if at all. This opens up all kinds of new wizardry for the kicking team and the return team from extremely bland to weird onside kick stuff. F supposedly the old way was to dangerous. Here we go with safe football. I wanna puke. Your thoughts ya all. Me, I don't like this change thingy.

BlitzburghRockCity
08-07-2011, 09:32 PM
If the returner does break one though it's going to be harder to catch him. 5 yds. may not seem like much but when everyone is running full speed down the field things could turn out differently this year. That's why the NFL did it, so they can see even more scoring. Plus the kicking team can only get a 5 yd. head start, which makes it harder to get down field to make the play...WHY? So there is more scoring of course. The NFL is all about offense, pretty soon there won't be any need for defense.

Thisoneguy555
08-07-2011, 11:18 PM
When they moved the kicking up to the 35, it didn't bother me, how many people here actually know that the NFL always kicked from the 35 up until the early 90's?

But only letting the kicking team have a 5 yard head start is stupid, they just don't want anyone running full speed anymore. It is has turned into touch football.

Real Deal Steel
08-07-2011, 11:24 PM
Pretty much, they don't want any defense, all they want to see is Arena league type scoring. If they could have a 53-47 score at the end of every game each week they'd be happy. It's disgusting! Football can no longer be a violent sport, just put them in some shorts and tshirt and let them play Goodell, atleast that way maybe they wouldn't sweat as much on the field too...can't have the multi million dollar players not getting a bruise or anything!


And that is why in under 8 years, the fan interest in the game will decline dramatically. Mark my words, the NFL is on a downward spiral as long as Goodall (Hitler) continues to make rules that are turning professional football into Arena Football.

BlitzburghRockCity
08-08-2011, 12:06 AM
When they moved the kicking up to the 35, it didn't bother me, how many people here actually know that the NFL always kicked from the 35 up until the early 90's?

But only letting the kicking team have a 5 yard head start is stupid, they just don't want anyone running full speed anymore. It is has turned into touch football.

They figure that not only will it give more opportunities for return Touchdowns but also it will help them in the ever ending quest to end violence in the NFL.

LarryNJ
08-08-2011, 10:22 AM
They treat the quarterbacks of this league like they're faberge eggs. Are they not people just like everyone else that's getting blocked and run into on the field?

No they aren't like everyone else. They are more like Faberge eggs! :)

I don't believe the new kick off rules will equal more scoring or more TD's from the kick returns. I'd bet the the average field position and amount of TD's returned is less this year than last.

BlitzburghRockCity
08-08-2011, 07:20 PM
QB's will always be treated differently. The Steelers even do it by not talking contracts after the season starts unless it's a QB. Either way the NFL wants to protect the highest profile position by keeping them as "not dirty" as possible on gameday.

I don't like the "blind side" blocking change, when possession changes hands or the kickers are going after a returner they are fair game. If you have tunnel vision enough to zero in a ball carrier and not be aware of your surroundings then you what's coming to you. Football is about thinking on your feet and adjusting at a split seconds notice.

As long as the Steelers are around though, Ben will get plenty dirty running for his life every week, LOL.