Is The NFL Going To Change Its OT Rules?

And what about the NFL Draft coming to Pittsburgh? NFL Network's Judy Battista with answers...

The Fan Morning Show
May 09, 2019 - 11:23 am
Roger Goodell

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan)- After seeing the Patriots march right down the field in overtime and end their season, the Kansas City Chiefs proposed a new rule in March in which each team would get at least one offensive possession, even if the first team to possess the ball scored a touchdown. 

Is this something the league would actually get on board with? 

NFL Network reporter Judy Battista addressed this when she joined The Fan Morning Show Thursday. 

"I was told after the owner's meeting in March that there was not a ton of support for changing overtime, that the feeling was, 'Play defense. You can still play defense,'" said Battista. "But the fact that they only tabled this and didn't get rid of it completely suggests they're at least going to talk about it. What they don't want is for the Super Bowl to go to overtime and a team to win the flip and be able to get one first down and be in position to win the game." 

"The reality of the situation is they don't want to [tilt] the game so completely away from defense. They want to encourage teams, 'You've got to play defense.' I think that's the reluctance with changing overtime. Don't forget, they could also change overtime just for postseason games instead of regular season games, [but] they've been reluctant to have a different set of rules for the playoffs versus regular season. They've got some options but I was told initially there was not a whole lot of momentum for changing overtime in any way." 

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Battista says the NFL has the numbers to back up their "if it ain't broke don't fix it" approach to this point. 

"The NFL's own data shows that even though the game has tilted over the last 20 years so heavily toward offense, it's not overwhelmingly the case in overtime that the team that wins the flip and takes the ball, wins. It's just not an overwhelming number," said Battista. "With that in mind, they say 'Why change the rules? Why basically eliminate defense from overtime?' That's not what they want to do. They have a meeting coming up in a few weeks here in Miami where they'll certainly discuss it again." 

"All of these things come down to if the league office thinks it's important to do it, they can coalesce support and twist arms. But I don't get the sense that there's that feeling in the league that you've got to do this." 

We saw the huge event the NFL Draft became in Nashville last year and Battista believes Pittsburgh could make it work as well. 

"I do think Pittsburgh would be an obvious location for the draft and a great location for the draft because it's passionate football fans, like what more do you want? Also, there's lots of other stuff that you can do. When you're not at the draft, there's other things you can do in Pittsburgh." 

"I think it's going to get moved around a lot. Now they've seen the enthusiasm, they've made it into like you bid for the Super Bowl. You bid to host the draft now, it's a big deal to those cities."             

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