The National Football League owners will look at extensive changes to the page of rules that concern the use of instant replay at the NFL Spring Meeting to be held starting Sunday in Palm Beach, Florida, and to conclude Wednesday of next week.
I’ve displayed the new rule proposal below, but only with the new language in, because the strikethrough did not migrate to the blog post when copied.
The major change is that the NFL will now leave all instant replay actions and decisions to the “replay official,” and openly replacing the role of the Referee in the process.
The 2012 Playing Rule Proposal reads:
Amend Rule 15, Section 9, (Instant Replay, pgs. 98-99) to read (new language underlined, deleted language struck through): (My note: the post below has only the new language. The term “Referee” is replaced by “Replay Official.”)
Section 9 Instant Replay
The League will employ a system of Instant Replay Review to aid officiating for reviewable plays as defined below. Prior to the two-minute warning of each half, a Coaches’ Challenge System will be in effect except for plays where the onfield ruling results in a score for either team. After the two-minute warning of each half, throughout any overtime period, and after all scoring plays, a Replay Review will be initiated by a Replay Official from a Replay Booth comparable to the location of the coaches’ booth or Press Box. The following procedures will be used:
Coaches’ Challenge. In each game, a team will be permitted a maximum of two challenges that will initiate Replay reviews except for plays where the onfield ruling results in a score for either team, after the two-minute warning of each half, and throughout any overtime period. Each challenge will require the use of a team timeout. If a challenge is upheld, the timeout will be restored to the challenging team. A challenge will only be restored if a team is successful on both of its challenges, in which case it shall be awarded a third challenge, but a fourth challenge will not be permitted under any circumstances. A team may challenge an on-field ruling up until the next legal snap or kick. If there is a foul that prevents the next snap, the team committing that foul will no longer be able to challenge the previous ruling. No challenges will be recognized from a team that has exhausted its timeouts. A team that is out of time outs or has used all of its available challenges may not attempt to initiate an additional challenge.
Penalty: For initiating a challenge when all of a team’s time outs have been exhausted, when all of its available challenges have been used, after the two minute warning of either half, during an overtime period, after a scoring play, or after a foul that prevents the next snap: Loss of 15 yards.
Replay Official’s Request for Review. After the two-minute warning of each half,
throughout any overtime period, and after all scoring plays, any Replay Review will be initiated by a Replay Official. There is no limit to the number of Replay Reviews that may be initiated by the Replay Official. He must initiate a review before the next legal snap or kick and cannot review any ruling against a team that commits a foul to prevent the next snap. His ability to initiate a review will be unrelated to the number of time outs that either team has remaining, and no time out will be charged for any review initiated by the Replay Official.
Reviews by Replay Official. All Replay Reviews will be conducted by the Replay Official in the Replay Booth. A decision will be reversed only when the Replay Official has indisputable visual evidence available to him that warrants the change.
Time Limit. Each review will be a maximum of 60 seconds in length. The time starts after the Referee establishes communication with the Replay Official and explains the ruling on the field.
Reviewable Plays. The Replay System will cover the following play situations only:
(a) Plays governed by Sideline, Goal Line, End Zone, and End Line:
1. Scoring plays, including a runner breaking the plane of the goal line.
2. Pass complete/incomplete/intercepted at sideline, goal line, end zone, and end
3. Runner/receiver in or out of bounds.
4. Recovery of loose ball in or out of bounds.
(b) Passing Plays:
1. Pass ruled complete/incomplete/intercepted in the field of play.
2. Touching of a forward pass by an ineligible receiver.
3. Touching of a forward pass by a defensive player.
4. Quarterback (Passer) forward pass or fumble.
5. Illegal forward pass beyond the line of scrimmage.
6. Illegal forward pass after change of possession.
7. Forward or backward pass thrown from behind line of scrimmage.
(c) Other Reviewable Plays:
1. Runner not ruled down by defensive contact.
2. Runner ruled down by defensive contact when the recovery of a fumble by an opponent or a teammate occurs in the action that happens following the fumble.
3. Ruling of incomplete pass when the recovery of a passer’s fumble by an
opponent or a teammate occurs in the action following the fumble.
4. Ruling of a loose ball out of bounds when it is recovered in the field of play by an opponent or a teammate in the action after the ball hits the ground.
Note 1: If the ruling of down by contact or incomplete pass is changed, the ball belongs to the recovering player at the spot of the recovery of the fumble, and any advance is nullified.
Note 2: If the Replay Official does not have indisputable visual evidence as to which player recovered the loose ball, the ruling on the field will stand.
Note 3: This does not apply to complete/incomplete passes, or the ruling of forward progress.
5. Forward progress with respect to a first down.
6. Touching of a kick.
7. A field goal or Try attempt that crosses below or above the crossbar, inside or
outside the uprights when it is lower than the top of the uprights, or touches
8. Number of players on the field at the snap.
9. Illegal forward handoff.
10. A loose ball in play striking a video board, guide wire, sky cam, or any other
Note: Non-reviewable plays include but are not limited to:
1. Status of the clock.
2. Proper down.
3. Penalty administration.
4. Runner ruled down by defensive contact (not involving fumbles).
5. Forward progress not relating to first down or goal line.
6. Recovery of a loose ball that does not involve a boundary line or the end zone.
7. Field goal or try attempts that cross above either upright without touching
8. Inadvertent whistle.
Submitted by Buffalo
Effect: All Instant Replay reviews will be made by the Replay Official.
Reason: Reduces time consumed by a review
Stay tuned for more on the NFL’s actions and Commissioner Roger Goodell’s statements from the NFL Spring Meeting.