Yakinsas spoke with McKay (the new chairman of the NFL's competition committee) today regarding some potential rule changes for next season, assuming there is a next season and the world doesn't cease to exist when the 2011 season is officially cancelled. He had this to say:
New Orleans fans won’t be happy to hear there is no plan to propose a new seeding process for the playoffs. That comes after the Saints went 11-5, but drew the No. 6 seed and a trip to No. 4 Seattle, which went 7-9 and won the NFC West. McKay said the competition committee discussed a look at changing the seeding, but there didn’t appear to be enough momentum from teams to even make a proposal.
But the most significant proposal, at least in my eyes, is one to make some major modifications on kickoffs. Due to a high rate of injuries on kickoffs, McKay said the committee will propose moving the spot of the kickoff from the 30-yard line to the 35 and players on the kicking team would have to line up within five yards of the ball.
The proposal also includes moving the spot of touchbacks to the receiving team’s 25-yard line from the 20. Penalties for kicks going out of bounds still would result in the ball being placed at the receiving team’s 40-yard line. The proposal also would eliminate all wedge blocks, including the two-man wedge.
As a Falcons fan, I'm fairly content with the seeding process (cough cough #1 seed cough), though I wouldn't mind if the NFL made it more record-dependent. To be honest, it sounds like NO is just grumpy because they let their SB win get to their heads, then subsequently got their behinds handed to them by a team that had no business playing a 17th game.
As for the the kickoff rules changing, I'm all for it. I'd be lying if I said the barbaric nature of the NFL wasn't a personal draw, but there has to be limits. These guys get paid a lot, but we can't just think of their paychecks as hazard pay.
Curious what y'all think.