NFL to put the Kibosh to Kickoffs?
When rugby morphed into gridiron football, the kickoff changed, too.
It was originally a benefit of scoring, allowing that team to gain advantageous field position.
In gridiron, though, it's become a predictable vehicle of sharing possession.
Rugby's version is much more dynamic, and injuries from it are fewer and farther between.
The NFL can only dream of a similar injury-per-kickoff ratio.
Commissioner Roger Goodell, of course, has pledged to make the professional version of the gridiron game safer.
The application of that promise is still up for debate.
A majority of the rule changes under Goodell have been aimed at reducing the number of hard hits taken by players. The past year alone saw a number rule changes in the name of increased safety measures.
What with concussions becoming a larger part of the public consciousness, the NFL can’t afford to leave its players in the dark anymore about dangerous and harmful head injuries.
Thank Will Smith for that:
Though the majority of the game takes place between the 20s, one of the more dangerous plays in football is the kickoff. Apparently collisions between two bodies moving at high speeds can lead to some pretty bad injuries.
They, in turn, can lead to long term health implications beyond concussions. Look no further than the tragic incident involving Rutgers player Eric LeGrand, who was paralyzed from the neck down on a kickoff in a game against Army.
Has it come time do away with the kickoff play?
Giant’s owner John Mara thinks that there is a real possibility that the kickoff won’t be around much longer.
To be precise, Mara doesn't think the NFL wants to eliminate the kickoff. Rather, he believes that the kickoff may be eventually phased out of the league.
Are Mara’s words to be taken as a premonition of future changes to the game?
Or is he simply just simply stroking those clamoring for change that they'll get around to it.