by STEVEN GEHEGAN/Staff Writer
Every year, the National Football League feels they need to increase the safety of the game.
That means more penalties for the defense.
This year, the NFL is proposing a rule that would eject a player from the game if a player gets two personal fouls. This will cause a lot of problems for the NFL if this rule passes.
The first problem is that the referees are the ones who decide what is and what is not a personal foul, which would mean putting more power in the hands of the referee, and that, I would not want to watch. The more power they put into the hands of the referees. The more they take away from the players’ ability to decide a game.
If the referees call two quick personal fouls early in the game on one player, that could shape the outcome of the game. While some fouls might warrant an ejection, grabbing a player’s jersey for pass interference should not be one of them. That would cause a major disadvantage to the team that is down a man.
Another problem with this proposed rule is not clear on which fouls would qualify. The rule is not made specific about what constitutes a personal foul that could warrant an ejection. So, again, the rule is left to the referees to interpret the vague meaning. The catch rule has led them to make mistakes that help decide a game. A way around this would be for the NFL to make the rule more defined, such as listing the fouls that they would consider warranting an ejection, such as targeting. This way, the NFL would have to own up to the mistakes that the referees make in games.
The last problem would be that with the proposed rule there would not be any consistency with the officiating. Not all referees call games the same way, and the way a game is officiated might change if there are two rivals facing off. Since not all the referees see every play, this could also lead to someone thinking a person should be kicked out. Since there is no way to get every call right (unless you want to review every play which would take way to long), the players should not have to suffer for a mistake made by the referee.
If the NFL really wants this rule in place, then it should go to three strikes and you are out, instead of just two. That would give more leeway for the referee to be able to make a mistake, and it not have it have a major impact on the game’s outcome.