No Yards Rule!!!!

OK now, can the league seriously think about getting rid of this STUPID rule. Every punt the flag is thrown for No Yards, 5-15 yards added on. Guys are running full speed/effort down the field to make that big hit and have to hit the breaks so they won't be within that dumb 5 yard buffer. Coverage teams might as well take it easy and give the returner the extra 15 yards of a run back. Get rid of this rule for next year and adopt the "Fair Catch" rule.


the kicking game is an integral part of the Canadian game. Runbacks on kick returns make for some of the most exciting plays in OUR game.

Fair Catch - DON'T DO IT!!

This is not the NFL. Horrible idea.

If you prefer to see the fair catch then just watch the NFL more I guess.

No way should the CFL adopt the fair catch. Not now, not ever. This is Canadian football, with a closer association to the rugby origins of the game. This is apparent in the rouge, the "live ball" rule, no fair catches and no touchbacks. Those things have no place in our game.

Leave the fair catch in the USA where it came from.If fans there enjoy seeing a returner wave his arms in surrender and catch the ball and make no effort to move it forward, or watching a bunch of players stand around the ball on the ground waiting for it to stop so one of them can touch it, that's their privilege.

I agree the refs are inconsistant and usually throw a flag when they should stay out of the game, The intent of the rule was to protect the Kick returners, get rid of the 5 yd no yd penalty, i agree but keep the 15 yd penalty for obviouse intent to injure the returner, NEVER ADOPT the fairy catch rule NEVER :twisted:

No yards calls, while frustarting, are much more tolerable when one mentions the fair catch.



Better still, why don't we roll back protection rules to what they were in the sixties and have NO BLOCKING on returns? ROTFLMFAO

The difference between Garney Henley and Gurney Henley was the five-yard restraining rule. Even then.

There is ZERO chance that CFL owners are going to accept increased roster sizes to see returners scraped off the turf every few games. The difference between the CFL and the NFL IS the emphasis on the kicking game. The fair catch rule would nullify that. EOS.

Oski Wee Wee,

Whatever they do or don't do, please for the life of me CFL don't adopt the most boring play in all of sports, the fair catch rule. That's when I usually turn off an NFL game when I see one of these pansy, stop the play calls by a returner. Can't the NFL figure out something better than this piece of crap?

Just found this from an article in the States, pretty well sums it up right from down south:

"I didn't like to fair catch, it defeats the purpose," Sydner said, reminiscing about his daring as a punt returner. "Who wants to go back there and waste a play by fair catching when you've got a chance to make something happen?

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To be fair to the returner, if a Ray Guy or Mike Scifres five-second-hangtime punt is causing my neck to crane as a returner and I have the second coming of Steve Tasker or Hank Bauer running full-tilt at me, break out the tutu because I'm fair catching. LMAO

In the NFL, the great punter IS the weapon in the kicking game. In the CFL, it IS the great returner. I believe with every fibre in my Raider-biased being Ray Guy should be in Canton, but the fact that Earl Winfield ISN'T enshrined up here is an abomination IMHO.

Devin Hester has basically been taken out of the return game by the Bears for reasons of self-preservation for the Great Receiving Experiment 2.0 (Cutler Edition). Gizmo Williams thrilled folks for over a decade as a return specialist and Dante Hall as...wait... LOL The no-yards rule extends careers. What a sin?

Oski Wee Wee,

I think it should be modified and only called when the ball is in the air, once it hits the ground the D should be allowed to down the ball, Im so sick of returners just sitting there for like 3 seconds before he picks up the ball.

Call what? No yards is on principle based upon a restraining area, not something invoked on the fly. The problem with not being concrete about it is that you will see returners getting creamed more often trying to snag balls on the fly going into the coverage team to get the penalty called. The coverage team would become the guys "waiting around" for that second or two to see if the ball would hit the ground, not prepared to focus on the returner, react, and tackle. The result would be a less-defined return game in my opinion.

At least the restraining area currently is something that a coverage guy can get a handle on in short order.

Rather harder to coach guys in the kind of built-in ambiguity that a compromise like you suggest would cause, say in a Regina-based game (sans dome) in October.

Oski Wee Wee,

One more thought: in my view, restraining zones are there to protect the returner, period. The returner is the focal point for the zone, not the ball. The problem with the scenario safety-wise is that a returner may elect to let the ball hit the ground to avoid a short-hop turnover, ease up, and still have a coverage guy plow into him "downing" the ball. The problem of watching the returners field balls that are rolling with the restraining area is a necessary evil compared to a "75% free catch" concept.

Oski Wee Wee,

This has been debated before. Never will we have the fair catch rule....thankfully. When playing football, I don't think you should be allowed to opt-out of playing football.

Leave those rules for the ploddingly slow game down south.

No yards does go back to the origins of the sport, and is a rule that I prefer (in its current 5 and 15 form), and one that teams should be able to follow. The five yards distance can be quite subjective at times. I don't know how referees are taught to call this, but I would prefer they adjust their accuracy based on how the play occurs. If a player is close to the 5 yards and is at least attempting to keep their distance, don't throw a flag. If a player is not attempting to respect the distance, throw the flag. Of course, this again leads to more judgement by the referee.

Winnipeg took a ton of no yards penalties last week, and a lot of them were because they had a returner way down field after the kick, and the Hamilton player caught the ball in the air inside the 5 yards. In one case the returner dropped the ball, but it didn't matter because of the no yards, which negates the turnover.

I'm sure this was frustrating to Winnipeg fans, because what starts out looking like a good kick, and good coverage results in poor field position. A friend of mine who played football told me they were always taught that you had to pick up the ball in the air and make sure you weren't inside the 5 yards when it comes down.

I think the rule is OK, and does make for more excitement.


The OVERALL sentiment - that there are just TOO MANY, UNNECESSARY flags thrown on a punt - is one I completely agree with.

I would NEVER suggest the elimination of the HALO, but the rule could use an ADDENDUM to allow for a little referee discretion. Something like - provided the defender is not moving forward, or toward the returner when the ball is touched/recovered then no yards does not apply.

That might eliminate the penalty on those plays where you see the defenders BACKPEDALING away from the returner, or that group of defenders standing around the returner a couple feet inside of the 5yard halo when the returner finally picks the ball up.

Let’s face it, once the ball bounces around a couple times and the returner is amongst a sea of defenders - the purpose of the no yards rule has, essentially, lost its VALUE. The TRUE value of the halo is in ensuring the returners SAFETY when catching a ball cleanly, on the fly … once the ball hits the ground and rolled around, allowing a sea of defenders to form around the returner - there should be a slightly different standard to be applied.


P.S The most BORING play in ALL of football is NOT the fair catch - that moniker belongs to the SINGLE EXTRA POINT after a TD !!

How about eliminating the penalty if the offending player, realizing that he has violated the 5 yard halo, does not touch the ball carrier, or regains a 5 yard cushion before contacting the returner. Kinda like a delayed offside in hockey. Not sure how difficult that would be for the officials to monitor.

The rule is fine as it is now.

If a guy is inside the 5 yards, then you get a flag. It's that simple.

I like the element of the kicker or anyone onside being able to recover a punt.

I am glad to see that no one has agreed with this suggestion.

Many times the refs can't get the current simple rule correct! Dont confuse them even more!!

In hockey, a linesman would have one, maybe two guys to monitor re tag-up offside, normally. In football? You might have six or so would-be tacklers to monitor simultaneously with the focus of the halo (the returner) moving around dynamically as opposed to a fixed line as in hockey. Not sure I'd want to overload the zebras any more than what they deal with now. LOL

Oski Wee Wee,