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NFL owners consider new overtime rules for playoffs

March 22, 2010 |  1:01 pm

NFL owners are considering new overtime rules.


Coin-toss_400 I'm a Steelers fan, and I've been hoping for some sort of change ever since Thanksgiving 1998. And I'm sure Vikings fans would agree after the way their season ended this year.

Not so sure I'm crazy about the format being proposed (for the playoffs only) by the NFL's competition committee at the league's annual owners' meetings in Orlando, Fla., this week. Basically, both teams could have a possession -- but not if the team that wins the coin toss scores a touchdown. In that case, the game is over.

If that team scores a field goal, the second team gets possession. If neither team has a lead at the end of that possession, regular sudden-death rules apply.

To me, it seems too complicated. If the current format gives too great an advantage to the team that wins the coin toss, then the simple solution would be to make sure each team gets at least one possession no matter what and leave everything else the same.

Apparently, Commissioner Roger Goodell disagrees with me. According the Associated Press, Goodell believes that ending the game if the team that wins the toss scores a touchdown on the first possession keeps with the spirit of sudden death. I say it still gives that team too great an advantage.

Plus, I don't like the idea of having different rules for the playoffs and the regular season. If the system is broken, it makes no sense to fix it only for January.

What do you think?

-- Chuck Schilken

Photo: New Orleans Saints kicker Garrett Hartley kicks the game-winning field goal during overtime in the NFC Championship NFL football game against the Minnesota Vikings. Credit: Mark Humphrey / Associated Press