CFL could tweak rules again

CFL could tweak rules to help end snoozefests, improve game

Possibly coming soon to a CFL stadium near you: converts worth more than one point, greater space for kick returners or even stricter pass interference rules.

Every off-season the league and its football operations folks get together to discuss how to improve the product on the field. Those who watched some of last year's snoozefests would suggest there is plenty of room for improvement when it comes to the three-down product.

The league doesn't necessarily disagree, but officials are not hitting the panic button just yet after scoring took a serious hit and penalties skyrocketed in 2014.

“Every year we have a discussion on the rules and how to make the game better,? Matt Maychak, the CFL's vice-president of communications, said Wednesday in Winnipeg at the league's annual congress. “This year it's fair to say it had a greater urgency to it because of the year we had. That's fair.?

Former commissioner Mark Cohon said in his final state of the league address in November that the league would do an “in-depth? analysis when the league's power players got together in Las Vegas last month for their annual review of the season, and Maychak said Wednesday there was more “brainstorming? in that meeting than there usually is.

“I don't want to make it sound like there's a great panic in the land, but I also don't want to make it sound like there's no problem,? Maychak said. “The coaches just said it's often cyclical. They're coaches. They adjust from year to year.?

Kevin McDonald, the CFL's vice-president of football operations, seems to be more in the camp that several significant factors led to points per game dropping from 52.4 in 2013 to 45.5 in 2014. McDonald believes the Ottawa RedBlacks expansion, injuries to almost every starting quarterback and the primary use of the extra designated import on defence led to the scoring drop. Specifically, the extra import was used on the defensive line.

“It was creating a fresher defensive attack on offensive linemen, which maybe resulted in quarterback injuries,? McDonald said.

So now the question that must be answered is this: Was 2014 a one off, or was it just the start of a bad trend that turned off some fans?

“I don't want to speak for all the football guys, but there was a sense that some of this is cyclical, that football constantly adjusts and adjusts to the adjustment, and some of the guys felt some of this will iron out over time,? Maychak said. “Some of it was seen as unique to this year.

“You add a ninth team, you've got a lot of new guys, a lot of young guys, so offensive play is affected by false starts and offsides and things like that.?

There is one thing the CFL vowed it won't do, however, and that is turn into a newer version of the now defunct XFL, which replaced its coin toss with a race to the 50-yard line.

“There's some willingness on the football people's part to open up discussion about how to improve the game and how to improve scoring, whether that's simplifying PI or looking at making the convert more exciting, for instance,? Maychak said. “But at the same time they were saying it goes in cycles. Don't opt for gimmick. Be thoughtful.?

And if anyone out there has any thoughts, the CFL is always willing to listen.

Convert discussion could be on table

The CFL is looking at making changes to four areas of the game in an effort to increase scoring.

Details were scarce on Wednesday at the annual CFL congress in Winnipeg, because those on the rules committee have not yet been made aware of what will be up for discussion this spring. One source, however, shared the general ideas that could be on the table soon.

The first, and likely most interesting from a fan perspective, is the boring old convert, which would be taken out back and put out of its misery if we were in charge. One option is forcing teams to go for two, while another is having them kick from greater distances than the 12-yard line like it is now. The longer the convert attempt, the greater number of points that would be awarded if it's good.

That would drive coaches crazy from a strategy perspective, but it certainly sounds entertaining. Another option, according to the source, is getting rid of the convert entirely.

The other three areas of examination revolve around kick returns, pass interference and the flow of the game. All would improve scoring, of course.

Also, the ability to review pass interference calls and non-calls, which the league implemented last season for the first time in any professional football league, could still be removed from the rule book or altered.

[url=] ... prove-game[/url]
The first, and likely most interesting from a fan perspective, is the boring old convert, which would be taken out back and put out of its misery if we were in charge. One option is forcing teams to go for two, while another is having them kick from greater distances than the 12-yard line like it is now. The longer the convert attempt, the greater number of points that would be awarded if it's good.
How about putting the goal posts behind the end zone? a convert would then be a 32 yard attempt.

I like that idea! Send the CFL an email or tweet or something Slim!

Also, awarding more points than just one the further out the kick is from. That would add a whole new level to strategy and fan interest.

How about leave the game alone?? It's fine the way it is.

And a field goal try from the 25 would be a 50 yarder. This would be a recipe for a drop in scoring, methinks.

I still say: make the one-point convert an automatic except where the team wants to go for two points. So if you score a major, you decide whether to tack on the extra 1 point (no play, it’s just tacked on) or whether to go for 2 points.

And while we're at it, why don't we make the end zone 10 yds deep, narrow and shorten the field, allow for the player to signal a fair catch on a punt and take away one player from each team. And how about eliminating the import rule.

Won't that make for a better game. :twisted:

Agree with a previous post.....leave the game alone. :thup:

It is strange how a bad snap or bad hold can sometimes happens on field goals, probably 2 or 3 a season
But it rarely,rarely happens on a convert. :?

Yes, probably, but to me the excitement of football is the TD, it's not about points or the routine short FG or a single point off of a failed FG or convert.
It should be about scoring TDs and how we can score more TDs not the routine boring points that are routinely awarded.

Any and all points scored alters the game. Alters strategy and ultimately adds excitement. Especially true in the CFL. Can you imagine what a game would be like if only touchdown's counted? It would not be football as we know it in any way ,shape or form. I think you'd see a ton of punting and much tougher defenses. Little scoring and little excitement.

Would be an interesting experiment.

This is what would have been know as Rugby Football, circa 1862. Gridiron had not been codified, and the only way to score a trey, was by being able to touch the ball down (Touchdown) to the ground past the other team's dead line. . Goal posts were later added to allow goals from the field (Field goal), and at one point, carried greater value than the TD.

American's (in boston especially) at one point played a messed up sort of hazing ritual they called football or "the Usual Rush", and the only way to score was by kicking the ball passed the other teams dead line. it was played for years strictly seniors vs freshmen.

imagine that... americans kicking the ball more than us during a game of football?

As I saw on an american show the back foul line in the their endzone is out of bounds....they were saying by the letter of the law as soon as a foot or ball brakes the plain (in a kick) the play is ruled dead...seeing a convert and field goals must go though the uprights and over the cross bar nothing would or could the commentator said on TV seeing that their crossbar is in the dead ball zone their kicking points should not count...but then laughed saying that they can and will do as they please no matter what. It was a funny show as they made fun of themselves.

I was gonna rant about how they should never change the convert rule but I just had this idea that I think could be interesting:

Put the ball on the 25 yard line.
A field goal is worth 1 point.
Moving the ball past the 20 yard line is worth 2.

Effectively, this is the same as moving the goal posts to the back of the end zone, only it doesn't alter the rest of the game. (It also makes end-zones 45 yards deep, but I can live with that)

That would be, in effect, a 32-yard FG, which is NOT an automatic score by any means. An interesting option would be the regular 2-point convert or a 35-yard FG attempt for 2 points after a touchdown.

Another rule tweak that I would like to see is Offensive Pass Interference being called correctly. The mess during the EDF between Breaux and Carter explains it all - Carter initiated the contact by pushing off of Breaux's face mask and stepping OOB, yet Breaux was called for DPI, even after a coach's challenge.

I am definitely opposed to the idea of moving the goal posts to the dead ball line. That would make wide FG attempts non-returnable. I was not in favour of taking special teams play out of overtime, which the league chose to do years ago, and think that the moving of the goal posts would now take away some of the most exciting special teams plays during regulation time too.

Like NFL Blitz the video game....(for the record, i agree).

Terrible idea. No points should ever be “automatic”. Teams should have to “earn” all the points they get. How about this, if you get the ball withing the 10 yard line but fail to score, we award the team say, 2 points for trying hard. Here’s a better one, if a team tries a field goal and misses, we give them one point for a good try. OOps we already have that one. Just one more, if a team fumbles ant the other team recovers, they get one point for causing the fumble and if they run it back more than say, 10 yards, they get another bonus point. Think I’ll email these off the the manipulators of our game and then decide if I want to watch CFL or Big Bang Theory.

This is so many levels of wrong.

Why risk only getting only 6 points, when your guaranteed 7? So if a team elects for two they are punished by losing guaranteed point! and if they succeed, get only a single point advantage.

This is why that option only exists in video games

It ain't broke! :roll:

Pat Lynch(the old guy)

Voice of reason. (Is that allowed here?)