The NFL is in a period where not a lot of decisions regarding roster construction are made. The main part of free agency is now behind, and the draft is still a month away. But the league is holding meetings with things such as rule changes being discussed.
This moment of the offseason is a great opportunity for media to talk to general managers and coaches. The Scouting Combine is the first encounter with them, although at this point teams have already made big decisions since the league year has officially begun.
A topic frequently discussed in these annual meetings is what rules could be modified. Last year they implemented an adjustment to overtimes, with both teams getting at least one possession in playoff games. There was another one approved this time that hast some players and fans excited.
What rule did the NFL change?
The rule changes proposed by the Competition Committee are usually the ones that have a higher probability to be accepted. However, teams can also pitch their ideas to see if they get enough votes. That’s what happened with a proposition made by the Philadelphia Eagles.
NFL owners voted that from now on the number 0 will be allowed, except in the cases of offensive and defensive linemen. In 2021 there was a big revolution in the league when more positions groups could start using single digit numbers on their jerseys. That had some stars going back to their college numbers, but this one takes it one step further.
What rules did the NFL not modify?
Seeing rule changes is not something that happens very often. In fact, most of the proposals are usually rejected. This year a potential modification that caused some controversy was to make the roughing the passer calls reviewable, although that didn’t pass. The same resolution applied to adding a third quarterback as an emergency on gamedays.
It was a proposal made to avoid repeating the outcome of the NFC Championship game, when the San Francisco 49ers run out of quarterbacks against the Eagles. Other rejected proposals were changing the ball placement of a touchback after punts, and that wild-card team should host a playoff game if playing vs a division winner with losing record.