the study of the kicking components within sports

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Tinkering with Extra Points

The casual talk began a few years ago. Last year, experiments were conducted. This year looks like there will very likely be official changes to the Extra Point in the NFL. The story is similar farther north in the CFL.

We checked in with few kicking guys and asked them the following:
"What are your thoughts on the NFL tinkering with the PAT rules... should it be changed? If so, how would you change it it it were up to you?"
Ryan Donahue, Kick Ball Far Academy
"The PAT should be changed to solidify the kicker position. When football started, a kick was worth 5 points.  If we still want to call it football instead of rugby, we need a system that keeps our kind in the game.
I am a fan of the progressive system where you may receive 1, 2, or 3 points depending on the distance of the kick. It will add much more value to the game as well as more excitement. An excitement which, with recent safety rule changes, has been sorely missed by the target audience. High scores are what sells tickets in today's game which satisfy the league, owners, coaches, and most of all: KICKERS!"

Todd Wilkins, former University of Wisconsin-Whitewater kicker
"The NFL should have no reason to take the change the extra point. They are trying to get gimmicky again !  Should baseball move to two strikes three balls ? No way tell the NFL to let tradition and skill stay in the game."

Rene Paredes, Calgary Stampeders kicker
"Up here in the CFL they are trying to move the extra point from a 12 yard to a 32 yard.  And moving the 2 point from the 5 yard to the 3.  It doesn't bother me that they're moving it back but it bothers me to not know the future of the kicking game.  Up here they'll most likely go for 2 depending on your offence."

Rob Maver, Calgary Stampeders punter
"While I'm not for changing how the game is played I can understand how some feel it is necessary for this play. 
Should changes increase the difficulty of the play, reasonably, while respecting it as a traditional kick conversion then I'm all for it. Should changes increase probability of successful two point play diminishing role of kickers and special teams I would be adamantly against it."

Brent Grablachoff, Kicking World
"I'm all for making changes for things that Need to be improved upon. I do not believe there is a problem with the 'Extra Point' and it should remain unchanged. Tinkering with something that is not broken seems to me like the NFL is investing it's resources inefficiently.
Changing the history of the best game ever invented would be a major crack at it's integrity. A change to the system of the 'Point After Attempt' (PAT), I believe, would set a precedent to allow further tinkering of the game of football (more freely) in the future.
This in my opinion would be bad for the history of the game and create a less authentic and less appreciated tradition and disrespect for the game of football by its loyal fans."

John Potter, former Washington Redskins kicker
"The standards for an NFL kicker are, and will always be, make every single kick you attempt. Anything less than than is not acceptable. So am I in favor of making our jobs even harder? Not so much. Now a designated place on the roster for a kickoff specialist, that’s the conversation they should be having."

Chris Husby, Special Teams Football Academy
"They should just leave it alone.  Why try to change something that kickers have worked so hard to perfect (PATs and FGs)?"

Gregory Rivara, Rivara Kicking
"In regards to the extra point rule change, I firmly believe that this radical change will be a positive note for special teams. Special teams, for too long, has been placed on the back burner and has not been given the attention it rightfully deserves. This change will bring special teams not only the attention it deserves but a chance to be a game changer. Special teams is one of the three most important phases of the game where games are lost and won.This rule change gives the extra point that opportunity. A drastic effect to lose and win a game. This will not only bring attention to special teams but the respect kickers, punters and snappers deserve. This rule change gives the extra point that opportunity to drastically effect the outcome of a game and thus bring special teams to the forefront of the National Football League."

Kickology's proposal, similar to the first response above from Ryan, would be to re-emphasize kicking. We recommend changing the scoring as follows:
  • Touchdowns would be worth 5 points
  • After the TD, teams could opt for one of three kicking attempts: a 30 yarder for 1 point, a 45 yarder for 2 points or a 60 yarder for 3 points
  • The option to run or throw for a conversion would be eliminated, because there is already too much running and throwing (and not enough kicking)

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