What improvements would you like to see?

I hestitate to use the word "changes" so will use "improvments". Do you have any opinions for improvemtns for next year? Here are some of mine.
Video replay:

  • need more camera angles during regular season games. How crucial was the third down gamble in the GC. The camera being right on the line of scrimmage gave a clear view. Perhaps each team should be required to install cameras that are permentantly mounted at the goal line and to look down the sidelines?
  • during a review, all aspects that affect the part of the play that was challenged should be reviewed. For example if during a questionable catch (defense challenge that the ball was dropped and the review confirms this)the defender clearly interfered (say faceguarding with his hands) but was not flagged, that should be able to be called as a penalty even though it was not the "object" of the review.
    Rule improvements:
  • clearly define when a quarterback has crossed the line of scrimmage for a forward pass. I suggest the last point of contact (either foot)with the field before releasing the ball (still somewhat subjective but much better than the point of release for the ball). This would be consistant with a reciever standing in bounds but reaching way out of bounds to make a fair catch.
  • define a catch more clearly. Too many times the ball was clearly caught but then a defender who had to take two or three steps to get there managed to strip the ball and it was called incomplete. Common sense showed some of these as catches. As well use some common snense in the endzones when determining touchdowns on catches. If a running back just gets the ball accross the line it is a touchdown even if the ball is slapped out of his hands a fraction of a second after crossing. I saw defenders and recievers make simultaneous catches in the endzone(which should belong to the reciever) and have the ball ripped out of the reciever's hands after the players rolled on the ground and it being called an interception. Maybe at midfield but the touchdown should have been scored the second that the simultaneous catch was made and the play should have been dead at that point.
  • make punting out of bounds a penalty, no matter where it is on the field or eliminate the rule altogether. Why are the 20 yards closest to an endzone so special? That is when the defense really needs the return. Is it some sort of reward for the offense getting almost into field goal range?

What are your thoughts and ideas?

I agree with these suggestions for the most part. The goal line camera angle would be excellent and I'm sure every team could afford a couple of these. Not sure if a penalty like that is reviewable though, what you are saying. I like the foot aspect of the line of scrimmage with the qb throwing, less subjective than now. Don't like taking the coffin corner aspect of punting out though, keep it as it is but make the penalty more severe, 15 yards instead of 10 like now. In terms of a catch, a receiver has to keep it under control long enough after someone slaps it out or he hits the ground so just getting the ball over the end-zone I don't think should count, there has to be some aspect of control for a second or two I think, like making contact with the ground and the ball pops out.

And what about an incentive to go for a first down on third down? :wink:

this suggestion isn't specific but more general.........we need.....badly better officials...on the field you have three teams, home and visistors and the officials....and we need to improve them..... not sure how.....better pay so it becomes more of a job then a pastime thing.....more trainging??? not sure.....but most be improved...

Great Post Narles.

If I've said it once, I've said it a million times. Replay needs more cameras and more angles. If you can't do it right, then don't do it at all.

Great comment on defining a catch. The last couple of years sure have been interesting on what is a catch and what is a fumble.

Can I add one more?

Get rid of the sissy QB protection rules. They didn't work this year as more QB's were injured this year than any other year. This is Football, not dancing with the Stars! I beleive they need to protect the passer in a vulnerable position, but this years rule changes were a joke!

co-signed

Get rid of replay altogether.
It has proven to add nothing of value to the game and all it is is 5 minutes of my life in every game that I'll never get back...
Now, conceding that won't happen, they absolutely need to add some cameras to provide more views of the play.
Adding penalties to the list of things reviewable is a pandora's box we do not need to open!!

I like the concept on defining when a QB is over the line.
Point of release is to vague, while where the QB is actually standing when he releases the ball makes sense.
If he is in the air while throwing and can still throw a strike, good for him...
I am not sure how much this rule change will help during a live play, but if you must have replay, it will help there...

Tightening up the interpretation of "a catch" is needed. I don't think the rules need to change, just the refs need to be consistant.
They called the play this year like they were encountering the rules for the first time, everytime, and that is where the problem lies. to reference the replay concept again, the money spent there would be far more useful if it were spent giving training sessions to the coaches, ie., pay them and train them.

The endzone catch aspect of your argument has no separate validity. If it is a catch, it is a TD. If it is not a catch, it is not a TD. Defining a catch in the endzone IS EXACTLY the same as defining a catch at midfield. It cannot be any different.
Comparing GAINING possession in the endzone TO HAVING possession while crossing into the endzone are two completely different things--apples and oranges.
The only thing that determines a TD is having possession upon crossing into the endzone as determined by the goaline plane.
You simply cannot decide to call it differently than you would on the 33 yardline just because it is the endzone.
The comparison midfield is gaining a first down, not gaining possession. To get a first down, you must break the plane as set by the yard marker.
Whether you caught the ball or not is different.
I may have repeated myself a bit there, but so many people seem not to grasp this point, a little repetition might help...

I dont think that video replay needs to be scrapped. More cameras and different angles to make the right call will go a long way to improving the replay system. I say that you have cameras along both sidelines and at the back of both end zones. Of course, you need better officiating overall, but that is another subject altogether.

prevent/ discourage teams from giving up safetys. The Edmonton @ Montreal game towards the end of the season was the worst game of football i've ever seen..

Go get another beer and take a leak... 5 minutes well spent.. THEN bitch about the call. Case closed

cheaper beer

Earl and Arius, good points. I don't necessarily mean the reciever instantly getting the touchdown, but I have seen instances where the ball was clearly caught and the defender was allowed to handfight for it for several seconds. In the endzone once the receiver has the ball securely, the play should end. That has not always been the case this past year. This is different than a play at the 50 yard line where the ball is live until the player possessing the ball (after a completed catch) is downed by contact or the ball goes out of bounds.

Earl, there is an incentive for gambling on third down; retained possession and three more downs. I know what you are driving at though. The third down gamble is an exciting play (unless it is less than a foot or so). However having an offense get only 9.9 yards consistenetly does not deserve any type of reward.

I would like to give a different type of example for inclusion in a video review. Say a reciever ran an out route near the sidelines, the ball is underthrown and he dives back towards the inside of the field where he apparently traps the ball (well inbounds) and it is called incomplete. The offense challenges the catch. The review clearly shows the reciever got his hands under the ball and made the catch. It also clearly shows that as he turned to dive for the ball, he stepped out of bounds (without being pushed). The present review looks at the catch only and yet he should be an illegal reciever now. I am just saying that the play is much more the just the result and it should all be taken into account during the review.

I challenge you to show me ANY instance where this occured for “several seconds”! This is one of the problems we have with armchair reffing, we often seem to forget that slow motion replay is not real time!

While there were a couple cases where I thought possession did occur (in and out of the endzone). Overall I think fost of the bang-bang plays were called right. Yet, I agree that it would be nice if the spend a bit more time in reffing school reviewing how the bang-bang is applied.

As for the more camera’s, I belive that they use the broadcasters camera’s not the teams. I am not sure if the NFL is still using its own cameras or are now relying on the broadcasters angles.

As for using the teams camera’s, not sure I would support this. There have been enought problems with home town timekeepers, etc. Plus those stadiums that have there own crews to provide coverage for their big screens are not intergrated with the broadcast teams.

I would like to give a different type of example for inclusion in a video review. Say a reciever ran an out route near the sidelines, the ball is underthrown and he dives back towards the inside of the field where he apparently traps the ball (well inbounds) and it is called incomplete. The offense challenges the catch. The review clearly shows the reciever got his hands under the ball and made the catch. It also clearly shows that as he turned to dive for the ball, he stepped out of bounds (without being pushed). [b]The present review looks at the catch only and yet he should be an illegal reciever now. I am just saying that the play is much more the just the result and it should all be taken into account during the review.[/b]
Actually, as the replay rules now stand, if they saw a player step out of bounds, that is part of the replay and would overturn a catch. Anything the refs see in the replay is fair game, except of course penalties. I can't recall the exact circumstances, but I think it was Winnipeg (Armstrong) where the review challenge was made to see if he had stepped out of bounds, but what the review showed was that he didn't catch the ball (it might have been vice versus). So the rule already works the way you suggest, Narles.

The few wishes I have:

  1. Junk the '07 QB protection rules, QBs get hurt anyway.

  2. Increased # of camera angles.

  3. Replay Booth has input and contact (with the Refs on-field) into challenges and reviews throughout the game, not just the last three minutes. (ala having Black/Daley upstairs during the playoffs, but an extra official all season 'round now)

The one rule I would change is the one regarding fumbles along the sideline where the defense can get possession just by being the last to touch the ball before it goes out of bounds. Possession is the most important aspect of the game, and it should take more than kicking or slapping the ball out of bounds to acquire it.

I would like to see the CFL adopt the Same kicking rule as the CIS, on kicks returned past the goal line- Ball placed on 25 yd line.( or somewhere between the 20 and 40,Perhaps ad any yd passed the line -ie if returner were downed at the 15 yd line the line of scrimmage would be the 35 yd line-or 20+15+35. - this would encourage more returns and less conceded rouges :thup: - Would also like to see the 55 yd line re moved and 2 5yd zones added to each end zone, behind the goal line and move the gaol post 5 yd back.- I would also like to see the CFL adopt a agreement with the players association, that would level the field with respect to CIS qb,s, Opening a door for the Elite player,s to reach their potential.- O Canada Oskee wee wee and Mary Christmas

Arius, Thanks, I did not know that about the video replay.
Massdestruction, don't mess with the field length between the goal lines, that would be a slippery slope to an "NFL" sized field. I also like the CIS rule for kick returns in the CIS but this is pro ball and I don't like it here. There is a trade off, if you want the ball guarantedd to be out further, you give up the single. In pro ball I don't like any yardage gained without being earned in some fashion.

As for the goal post, they are called that for a reason, they are on the goal line. Keep them there. I beleive that we used to have 25 yard deep endzone but can't recall when they were changed to 20 yards or why.
I would love to see something done to encourage Canadian QB's get a shot but it has to be a legitimate thing and not just some kid carrying a clip-board to fill a quota position.

If I remember correctly, the end zones were changed to 20 yards deep to accommodate the field in Vancouver which simply did not have room for 25 yard zones.

That's what comes from letting Stukus and the West Coasters into our league. (JOKE)