Rule Change Thread (post all your thoughts on potential rule changes here)

Long time fan here who thinks the CFL needs to seriously consider making some changes to increase the excitement of the game. The first change is the number of downs. I like watching offense and defense, not players running on and off the field to execute a punt. We have a great game with our motion and some of the other Canadian rules. Let's be honest, the punting game has had very little excitement ever since Gizmo Williams retired. And, it seems there is a flag thrown on every 2nd punt. The stats indicate punters average more yards in a game than quarterbacks - and to me - that's not football. Just throwing it out there.


There's a reason why theres minimal response to your thread my friend. All due respect, three downs is the heart of the game. I'm open to making improvements but this season is simply an asterisk on the league history. It's been not up to standard but missing an entire season has to count for something. I have been vocal about my utter indifference to this season of the league I love the most and it kills me


I totally agree. I have watched football and ushered the Ottawa Games in the sixties. That was exciting football ( Russ Jackson, Ronnie stewart Witt tucker) Right now I think our Canadien football sucks. Maybe it's me but this season is a total loss. Not exciting at all. Just this year, I hope it improves for next year.


I was always in favor of two CFL leagues and on the same website -- 12s and 11s.

12s would be the current game. 11s would be the NFL equivalent. Let the fans vote with their unhindered paid attendance to finally choose which game needs to stay and the other to die.

Do this for one year to determine what the Canadian populace wants and not be determined by Justin Trudeau.

There would be basically 18 teams for one year. After that experiment there would be 9 teams that would be either the current CFL or NFL game. Winner takes all.

? ? ? ? ? ?


Who pays for it?

Where do they find the extra players, ESPECIALLY quarterbacks (they can't find enough for 9 teams now)?

Where do you find the quality coaches (not certain there are enough to fill 9 teams now)?

How do you assign players to the respective "leagues" to avoid the result being rigged by the player allocation (i.e., best players in one or the other format)?



Every 2nd punt? Some games it's 3-4 special teams plays in a row! How is that even possible so late in the season?

21 minutes into the Winnipeg game and the Alouettes already have 2 X 15 no yards penalties? How does this happen? How do you give a 10-1 team a free 30 yards of field position?

2:29 left in the game, down by 7 and the Alouettes take a ? you guessed it special teams penalty (block in the back) that negates a 30 yard punt return! Brilliant special teams play Khari!

I would prefer a 10 man football experiment with normal CFL rules on an American field. That way the CFL could save some money and slowly expand if it wants to do so.


You forgot about 7 man football, so that’d be 27 teams over three different leagues.

Hurr durr, what a brilliant idea!

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There's more than enough players in the south to fill-out the rosters of the NFL equivalent CFL league that runs parallel to the existing league.

The NFL equivalent will be wearing exact replica uniforms of the CFL existing teams. There will be two Toronto teams call the Argos, etc.

Give it a chance. The NFL equivalent teams will be paid in WLAF salaries. Let the Canadian citizens vote with their attendance. If the existing CFL attendance is still better, we can put this 11 man game issue to bed for at least another 20 years.

Sorry. Nobody's going to give it a chance.


Just trying to help, 60YearFan.

There's more than enough 11-man action on planet earth.

The key question is for you and individually for everyone else in Canada is ... 'Do you want to give it a chance?' Only you can answer that as an individual.


I wasn't talking about myself. I couldn't do anything about it even if I wanted to. I don't think anybody who could would do it.

Never, this is the cfl. Watch 4 down football if you don’t like it.


These threads are coming up for a reason. More and more want to see some changes. I can give the league a pass this year but in no way do I want to see a season like this again. Hopefully the excitement comes back next year where offenses can throw, move and catch the ball with regularity, Games where touchdowns aren't a rarity.
I do prefer the " 3 down" game to stay but we need the big plays and touchdowns to go with it. Not happening much this year. A lot of 2 and outs w/t crappy QB and WR play.
I'd like the league to experiment in the pre-season with different variations of the rules as I mentioned in another thread. They may be total duds but give it a try !!
I hope the one's that say "3 downs only" and are so strict about not changing our rules are also the one's paying with their wallets w/t tickets and merchandise too because a hard stance and no action does nothing for this league at this point.


I agree. It's important also to distinguish between changes long overdue well before this season, and various ideas coming up perhaps based on a unique, shortened season with far less than optimal time for preparation after missing an entire season.

Lacklustre offence in this season does not surprise me at all.

By contrast note the NFL for which the players had not only a full season in 2020, albeit irregular in some scheduling, and a bit more time than usual to heal and prepare such that it's been an offensive explosion in this season.

We should hold back on any changes in rules of play for a few regular seasons and until after we have made other changes, such as especially going back to allowing 3 quarterbacks to be dressed, and various other participation and other changes as advocated for years before the pandemic.

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That's fair and that makes a lot of sense. Changes don't have to be immediate or happen at all. No harm in tickering and trying different things in the pre-season though. It's not all about " number of downs" as some may think. Heck, the game could even evolve to become a better version of it's normal self.


So as for changes to the game, some which I felt needed before the pandemic and thinking out loud here because it's the end of a night shift, and well, I have two hours to burn after tired of reading or studying all night and simply watching shows makes me sleepy goes in no particular order...

Bear in mind I don't have exactly all the current rules given a few of the changes in the last decade, so please excuse whatever matches already.

Possession On A Fumble Out Of Bounds
As opposed to a kick whether or not intentional (i.e. anything under the waist should be deemed a kick), possession should revert to the team that last possessed the ball not simply to the team that last touched the ball.

Eliminate More Blocking Below the Waist
Unless within 5 yards of or behind the line of scrimmage, with any player lining up outside of tackle or in motion prohibited from such a play (this prohibition would include all receivers but not running backs so long as they are not in motion or lining up outside of tackle as wingbacks etc)

On any kick or attempted kick from scrimmage or on any kickoff or safety kick, all blocking below the waist is prohibited.

No Yards In End Zone ==> No "Free Lunch" On Penalty For Kicking Team
The receiving team should have the option to take the single PLUS penalty yardage from the 35 or to elect a re-kick with penalty yardage to kicking team = No "free penalty" incentive to kicking team kicking into the end zone anyway

No Neck Contact On Tackle
As an extension to the horse collar tackle rule and the facemask rule, and to the antiquated and long-outlawed clothes-line tackle, unless the ball-carrier lowers his head, no contact to the neck when making a tackle is allowed or it's the same penalty as for a horse collar tackle.

3RD Quarterback Versatility
So long as other participation rules are not violated, the designated third quarterback, if any, may play any position from scrimmage with or without no more than one other quarterback on the play; however, unless lining up as the quarterback at the snap and receiving the snap, the third quarterback receives no protection as a quarterback even as a passer on any such play.

Penalties Enforced In Full Not "Half The Distance To The Goal"
The idea here is your team is penalized in full and does not benefit with fewer yards penalized merely because your team is in poor field position. If not enough yards before the end zone, the ball will be placed at the two-yard line. From there, it's half the distance for any further penalties to the one yard line.

Stomping, Spitting At A Player, Elbow To Chin, Kick or Knee Above Waist, Kick To Grounded Player
As the case potentially now in addition to many others, all these infractions, each which demonstrate intent to injure or defame, are grounds for immediate disqualification of the player, PLUS a one-game suspension minimum subject to additional penalties upon review by the league, and a 25-yard penalty. Video review may assist in all determinations.

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