above replacement level
- Mar 16, 2008
This will definitely punish teams that value kick coverage and do it well. Instead of banging every kick into the end zone, they could strategically kick balls inside the 5 and limit the return to before the 25. Now there's zero incentive to do it because the other team just takes a fair catch and get it at the 25. There's no point to even having kickoffs any more. Just put the ball at the 25 after the extra point.The new rule only impacts those in the air kicks short of the end zone. As with kicks one yard deep, now a kick that comes down the 1 will allow the returner to decide if he wants to take a fair catch to take it to the 25 or try to run it back.
I do wonder if we will see more long squib kicks, ones that bounce around the 15-20.