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Masthay sees rule-change idea as ‘quirky’

Posted by Mike Spofford on December 6, 2012 – 3:50 pm

121206masthay300The idea floated by Commissioner Roger Goodell this week in Time magazine to eliminate kickoffs from the NFL game would be a “quirky” rule change as far as Packers P Tim Masthay sees it.

Goodell was quoted in the magazine article saying one way to eliminate kickoffs — a play the league has viewed as a player-safety problem because of the number of injuries, particularly concussions, that have occurred due to high-speed collisions — would be to have a “fourth down” situation after a score. The ball is placed on the scoring team’s 30-yard line, and it’s fourth-and-15. The team that just scored would have the choice of whether to go for a first down to keep the ball (the new equivalent of an onside kick) or to punt the ball to the other team.

Masthay said a lot of the details would have to come to light, such as any rules regarding out-of-bounds punts, but he believes the rule would make a team’s punting efficiency and coverage all the more important. It would also be easier for an offensive team to steal a possession late in games.

“Your punt team would carry a little bit more weight. Instead of averaging say five times a game, you’d be out there 10 times a game,” he said.

“It would change those end-of-game scenarios. You wouldn’t have to execute an onside kick. You’d just trot your offense out there and try to get 15 yards to steal another series. It’s probably going to be tougher to execute a must-onside than an offensive play.”

Masthay is assuming the punt in that scenario would be from a regular punt formation and would not be executed as a free kick, such as after a safety is scored. The free kick would have the same formation as a kickoff, and if it’s a player-safety issue, not much would change.

That said, however, lining up in regular punt formation from a team’s own 30-yard line would tilt the field in favor of the receiving team, which would likely get much better field position than it receives now with kickoffs coming from the 35.

“A solid coverage punt, you’re going to net 40 yards. Say that’s the average, (then) offenses are going to start at the 30-yard line,” Masthay said. “Ever since they changed the kickoff to the 35, there’s been a lot of touchbacks, a lot of tackles inside the 20, not many explosive kickoff returns, so offenses haven’t been starting as far up on average.”

In the end, Masthay said if kickoffs are going to be eliminated, he’d rather see a new procedure like this than see the offense just be given the ball at a pre-determined spot, essentially eliminating any sort of kick to change possession after a score.

“Then you’re changing the game too much,” he said.

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Posted in Packers.com Blog | 27 Comments »

27 Responses to “Masthay sees rule-change idea as ‘quirky’”

  1. By MR KNOWlTALL on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    I can’t believe this garbage ask Rusty Draper, I AM ONE OF THE BEST QBS TO EVER PLAY THE GAME. A kicker/ punter player combination should make big BUX. I bet BRETT could be this man we search for.

  2. By Mike from Chicago on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    This is another example of the fame of football being woosified!! Without the kickoff, Devin Hester would have NEVER made it to the NFL. How many special teams “specialists” would never develop into anything because they never got the chance? Heck, Randal Cobb was made famous for his 1st kickoff return ever, right?

  3. By smilanesi on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    They ARE crazy. That is like eliminating the extra point. Even though we take a lot for granted Football would simply not be Football.

  4. By Old School on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    STOP IT! STOP IT! STOP IT! Before they get done changing the game the players will be wearing lace and chiffon.

  5. By Rusty Draper on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Not many injuries happen on an extra point,as for kick offs , changing the spot of the kick has not done much for the game. Players are still trying to run it out, even though they on average do NOT make it past the twenty. The problem is that when players get hurt (concussion’s) Players are taking legal action and it is going to cost the NFL big money. So what do you do ? After a score place the ball on the twenty thus ending kick offs and ending the possibility of injuries. It sucks but what is the safe option’s .

  6. By billfromc'ville on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Isn’t this saying that players are not taking responsibility for heir own action, so someone else has to? Come on man, just play he game!!

  7. By MR KNOWlTALL on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Players are taking themselves out so they don’t have to face the shame and that’s a cold-water HARD fact!

  8. By Steve on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    goodell is nothing but stupid ****. WILL SOMEONE FIRE HIM ALREADY!!??!!

  9. By NlGERIAGUEST on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    I gave myself a German gasmask!

  10. By Tom on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    This is another reason Roger Goodell needs to resign or be fired.

  11. By Don on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    I’m 66 yrs old and have been an avid football fan of the Pack as long as I can remember. With all of the TV commercials (when at the game wait time at home on TV)I can hardly stand to watch the games anymore. If the NFL makes a change like this I’m finished with it. I’d urge all fans to take a stand. We are the reason there is an NFL. If we stopped watching and attending games the NFL is finished. Don’t let them ruin our game.

  12. By Justin on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    I agree with Don. If this change were to happen I would probably be done watching the NFL. That is the dumbest idea I have ever heard.

  13. By northside billy on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    Finally a great idea! Now my Cubs will win the Superbowl!!

  14. By jim on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    im with you don. i am already sick of these pansy roughing calls and such. i use to watch the games every sunday and now i could care less (i get alot of stuff done without it). someone needs to tell these players “you get what youre paid for”. suck up the nuts and play the kids game you get payed millions upon millions to play.

  15. By Tyler on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    To those of you who think they are diminishing the game trying to protect players’ safety, maybe they should also move the goalposts to the front of the endzone again? Let’s give them simple leather helmets and reduce the amount of pads they’re wearing too. Yes, the game needs to evolve as time goes on. One of the biggest reasons for the game to evolve is to protect the men playing it. It’s asinine to think (or worse, let others know that you’re thinking) that a change to improve safety will ruin the game. Try to look at why the changes are being considered (this hasn’t even gone into effect – it’s an idea at this point), rather than how it will affect your level of enjoyment while sitting on your couch.

  16. By Mike from Chicago on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    Hey Tyler, take your flag football and go to the park with it! When are they going to look at making UFC fighting safer? What will it do to that sport? How about hockey, let’s make it pee-wee with no checking and padded walls. Oh my gosh, a batter got hit with a baseball. OK, eliminate the pitch, we have T-Ball! Sounds great doesn’t it???

  17. By Tyler on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    I understand your concern of the game being compromised, and I’m curious what it would do as well. All I’m saying is try to put yourself in the shoes of folks who actually are responsible for the safety of the players, rather than in the shoes of someone who has no stake involved except for watching every Sunday. Obviously those whose responsibility it is to look out for player safety are going to listen to all sides – those who oppose a change for various reasons (fans who think the game’s intensity will deteriorate and players whose main role/job is part of a kickoff/kickoff return team) and those who embrace the change for various reasons (of which safety is the majority). It’s great we all have a voice and have various outlets to let our voices be heard but let’s be respectful of folks who are doing their job and assume that maybe, just maybe, they have good intentions and that there’s a reason for what they’re doing. I’ve not seen many comments with possible alternate solutions – primarily only keeping status quo. Why is everyone so averse to change? Change can be a good thing if it’s done properly.

  18. By David on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    I read somewhaere there are only TWO padded practices left for the YEAR!

    TWO! How do you tell if a player who has been injured is able to play on any given Sunday if he dosen’t have any contact during any given week due the very limited number of padded practices.

    TWO! No wonder there are so many injuries during NFL games, that’s about the only timne these guys are getting hit.


  19. By PaulJ on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    I’m with all of you. I had to turn off football on thanksgiving after a unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for some hit by a defensive back that made a small amount of contact with the receiver’s helmet. I am so afraid that I won’t even recognize the game in 5 years….

  20. By "A" train on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    Goodell is ruining the NFL and his ideas about changing the game for player safety is obsurd. There is no safe way to play a direct contact sport. These players choose to play the game knowing there is a chance of injury. If they are afraid to get hurt then dont play its as simple as that. A player can get a concusion just as easy in any other aspcet of the game, why Goodell is so hell bent on kickoffs is beyond my understanding. We as fans need to stand up for our NFL and Goodell needs to quit playing God and listen to the fans who are the real reason the NFL exists. Screw you Goodell!!

  21. By sonovabeach on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    Eliminate two preseason games.
    Have 16 teams bye on weeks 6 and 7. Same on weeks 11 and 12 to rest.
    Get some hard data on how much time a body needs to rest between games, and look at eliminating Thursday night football.
    Get Goddell to quit tweeking everything and ruining the game.
    Give these players more time to heal with rest.
    Often the best teams do not make the playoffs because of injuries. Its always next year for them.
    We want the best team to raise the Lombardi not the team with the least amount of injuries heading into the playoffs.

  22. By Dominic on Dec 8, 2012 | Reply

    Goodell is trying to re-invent football. Maybe he should go make his own league, and leave the NFL alone.

  23. By goodell hates jesus on Dec 8, 2012 | Reply

    Goodell, Goodell, you suck at the NFL. You think we need change, we think you should go to hell.

  24. By goodell hates jesus on Dec 8, 2012 | Reply

    91% of NFL fans surveyed “hate” Roger Goodell. He cost the Pack a game by trotting out division III cast off refs. He took away smash mouth football (except anyone on offense can hit H2H). Now he’s changing the structure of the game itself! We don’t want a fluid commissioner that changes the game to get a couple more bucks, that IS what this all about. I will start watching more college football and less NFL goodellball if this change is instigated.

  25. By growsomeb_lls on Dec 8, 2012 | Reply

    Goodell is the typical bureaucrat who believes our beliefs, and opinions, don’t matter while HE makes HIS decisions.
    His backing the replacement ref’s was as arrogant as it gets.
    The only way to get through to Goddell is to hit him where it matters most, his NFL wallet.
    When he was faced with fans threatening to stop purchasing tickets, gear, and turning off T.V’s did he bring back the regular ref’s. But, typical to his arrogance, he never admitted a mistake had been made.
    We, as fans, and owners like wonderful Green Bay, need to send this message back to Goodell to stop ruining our game or all spending comes to a screeching halt.
    We lack a figurehead to speak our voice, so we must shed our belief that we can’t control anything and wait for someone to come out of the woodwork to fix everything for us. To stand up to the evil empire.
    Stop buying, stop spending, stop settling.

  26. By john on Dec 8, 2012 | Reply

    CBA + all this legal action = bye bye old game.

  27. By john on Dec 8, 2012 | Reply

    all you guys griping about Goodell its your owners who you should be complaining about they like what he is doing.If NFL loses in court its over. 1906 18 people died playing football and POFTUS stepped in. the kickoff is going away.

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