When it comes to the NFL’s overtime rules, the league seems to consistently be facing plenty of scrutiny. While they have tried to make the extra frame as fair and exciting as possible in recent years, many believe that they have continued to come up short — particularly with the “fair” aspect of it all.
The critics were never louder than after this year’s Divisional Round of the playoffs, after the Chiefs eliminated the Buffalo Bills in an epic overtime thriller…all because they won the coin toss.
The two teams had just battled it out for 60 minutes, with both offenses seemingly scoring at will down the stretch. At that point, with the game tied 36-36 heading into OT, you just knew whichever team won the toss was going to be moving on. And that turned out to be the Chiefs.
With all of the high-powered offenses these days, even the NFL’s decision to eliminate the first-team-to-score rule in favor of the current structure — where the first team to possess the ball must score a touchdown to end it, else it’s next score wins — seems unfair…
Which is why a few teams have submitted proposals to the Competition Committee to have some simple changes made to the NFL’s overtime format.
One proposal, which was sent in by the Colts and Eagles, asks that both teams get an opportunity to possess the ball in overtime. Meanwhile, the proposal submitted by the Titans suggests that the game only ends on the first possession if the team scores a touchdown AND a subsequent two-point conversion.
These still have to go through the competition committee, but there is momentum for the league to at least give one of these new formats a shot for next year’s postseason. Whether or not that’s the case should be confirmed within the coming weeks.