For the second week in a row, us NFL fans kissed our sister. The Vikings and Packers played to a 29-29 tie. A tie game. In 2018. Despite roughly a century of rule changes and game modifications, the NFL has simply dropped the ball (pun completely intended) when it comes to a tie game. No one is happy with this; not the fans and surely not the players. No one wants to grind it out on the field for over 3 hours to come away with nothing.
So how do we fix it? The NCAA has a method that ensures there won’t be a tie game. I’m not a big fan of how they do it, but it beats what the NFL has. In college, each team starts with the ball on the 25 yard line. Once you hit a 3rd OT, you have to try for the 2-point conversion. I’ve seen games drag on because of this, but again, it’s better than what the NFL offers.
I have ideas, not to say they’re foolproof, but at least it’s something. First off, let’s go back to a 15 minute overtime. I never understood why they went to a 10 minute one, it makes no sense. Both teams should get a shot at scoring, even if the first team to get the ball scores a touchdown. That seems fair to me. You don’t want 60 minutes of playing time to be potentially decided by, quite literally, the flip of a coin. So that’s a start.
Now, what do we do when that 15 minutes expires and the game is still tied? Here’s where we need to get a bit creative. If it’s the postseason, you keep playing until someone wins. This should never change. During the regular season, take a page out of the NHL handbook. The NHL goes to a shootout. For my money, this is one of the most exciting things in sports. I doubt the NFL could match that excitement, but…….are you ready……let’s leave it up to the kickers. Hear me out…..stay with me.
You flip a coin again. The winner of the coin toss picks the distance they’ll kick a field goal from. For instance, if you’re Baltimore, you start with 55 yards. Easy money for Tucker. If you make it, the other team has to match it. If they don’t; game over. If they do, then they get to pick the distance. You do this until a winner is declared. I’m in on this, I like it.
The NFL is concerned about safety, and rightly so. This battle of the kickers all but eliminates any safety concerns and still provides entertainment. Think of the emphasis placed on kickers and players who can block kicks. This is their time to shine. Oh, you threw for 436 yards? That’s nice. Did you see my game winning 57 yard field goal? Boom. Roasted.
This will almost definitely never happen, but don’t say I’m not thinking outside of the box. Give us an NHL level excitement OT shootout super awesome kicker battle. Please.