NFL owners, executives, and coaches met this week in sunny Boca Raton, Florida to convene for the annual NFL meeting. Among other discussions, one of the most important things to come out of the meeting is the league's rule changes for the upcoming year. The NFL's Competition Committee, composed of two owners, two club presidents, two general managers (Ozzie Newsome is one) and three head coaches, typically proposes new rules and adjustments annually at the meeting. Teams are also welcome to submit their own proposals for vote. This year, a total of 19 proposals were up to vote.
Seven passed thus far.
These proposals have been adopted just now by the clubs -- chop blocks are illegal, PATs permanently are at the 15 pic.twitter.com/LIEHOjif23— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 22, 2016
Most notable is the league's decision to outlaw chop blocks. While the league has slowly been cracking down and limiting the legality of the practice, a move this drastic was a little surprising. The NFL likely opted to ban the maneuver in order to cut down on knee injuries. It will certainly be interesting to see how screen passes play out from now on.
The 15-yard-line PAT is also here to stay, as the owners chose to keep the rule after its one-year trial period. The 'horse-collar zone' also now extends from the nameplate up on a players' jersey.
One of the rule proposals not addressed was brought up by the Ravens. At the AFC Coaches' Breakfast this morning, Head Coach John Harbaugh was adamant and passionate about Baltimore's proposal that would allow officials to review plays concerning head-to-head contact.
"Safety should be in replay. The fact that safety is not in replay right now just makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. [A]t some point in time, it's going to shift and everything's going to be reviewable except certain categories, and that's what our proposal says. So it's either going to be done now, or it's going to be done soon." - John Harbaugh
While Baltimore's proposal has been left alone by the convention, one day still remains for the league and its officials to pass any additional rules. Baltimore has two other proposals on the table, one which expands what plays a coach can challenge, and the other that calls for players to "wear jersey vests with numbers appropriate for their positions."