NFL owners reject most replay proposals, OK medical timeouts in wake of hit on Edelman in Super Bowl
PHOENIX (AP) — NFL owners shot down nearly every video replay proposal brought to their meetings Tuesday, while approving six safety rules enhancements.
Of the 13 alterations, including extending the number of coaches’ challenges and letting them challenge penalty calls, the only one passed will allow game officials to go to replay for clock issues at the end of a half, game or overtime if more than 1 second is on the clock.
Washington’s suggestion to use replay to review personal fouls was withdrawn.
The owners approved rules prohibiting players from pushing teammates on the line of scrimmage when the opponent is punting; eliminating all peel-back blocks; and extending defenseless player protection during an interception return.
They also approved a proposal for stopping play when a medical adviser believes a player is unstable and should be taken off the field.
Kent Somers of AZCentral.com has at least one reason the league approved the medical timeout this offseason:
New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman absorbed a severe hit on a catch in the fourth quarter of Super Bowl XLIX against the Seattle Seahawks.
On third and 14, quarterback Tom Brady connected with Edelman on a pass across the middle. Edelman took a devastating hit from Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor. Despite the impact, Edelman rose to his feet and kept running. But he appeared wobbly afterward.
NFL competition committee co-chairman Rich McKay said the NFL looked at the Edelman situation in weighing the change, according to John Keim of ESPN.com.
In essence, the new rule means that a neutral medical observer can pause the game if he or she suspects a player has suffered a serious injury, likely a concussion, but hasn’t come out of the game and is in need of medical attention.
It’s no secret that many players will attempt to hide such injuries or will continue to play despite appearing woozy or in pain after a blow to the head, so taking the decision out of their hands to leave the game is logical.