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NFL approves of seven rule changes, including automatic ejection rule

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BOCA RATON, FLA. – Despite protests from Seahawks cornerback, Richard Sherman the NFL passed the automatic ejection rule on Wednesday at the annual league meetings in Boca Raton, Florida.

Over the weekend, Sherman called the proposal “foolish’’ and labeled commissioner Roger Goodell as “just a suit’’ who doesn’t understand the game.

NFL owners approved a new “two-strikes-and-you’re-out” automatic ejection rule for NFL games next season.  The rule, which calls for players to be tossed after two “unsportsmanlike conduct” penalties in a game was discussed by Goodell during his press conference before Super Bowl 50.   In the 2015 season, there were 75 unsportsmanlike conduct penalties, a number that the NFL felt was too high.

“Sportsmanship is important to the membership,” Goodell said as the owners’ meetings concluded. “We all have standards. They have two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties before they’re ejected. The message from the membership, our clubs and the coaches is they’re going to be held to those high standards.”

Some other rule changes are as follows for the 2016 season by the competition committee:

1.  Makes all chop blocks illegal. “It is not one that has overwhelmed us in injury data, but it is not one we feel good about,” competition committee chairman Rich McKay said.

2.  Changes the spot of the next snap after a touchback resulting from a free kick to the 25-yard line.  Amended to one-year only.

3.  Expands the horse collar rule to include when a defender grabs the jersey at the name plate or above and pulls a runner toward the ground.

4.  Makes it a foul for delay of game when a team attempts to call a timeout when it is not permitted to do so

5.  Eliminates the five-yard penalty for an eligible receiver illegally touching a forward pass after being out of bounds and re-establishing himself inbounds, and makes it a loss of down.

6.  Eliminates multiple spots of enforcement for a double foul after a change of possession.