According to Dean Blandino, a former NFL official and current FOX NFL rules analyst a play that the Eagles used to 90% effectiveness will be under heavy scrutiny by the NFL this off season. No one has run more sneaks this season than the Eagles, who have attempted a league-high 33, which is the most by an NFL team since the 1990s.
“I think the league is going to take a look at this, and I’d be shocked if they don’t make a change,” Dean Blandino, a former NFL official and current FOX NFL rules analyst said to 33rd team. “I was talking to Sean Payton during Sunday’s game, and he said we’re going to do this every time next season if they don’t take it out. It amounts to a rugby scrum. The NFL wants to showcase the athleticism and skill of our athletes. This is just not a skillful play. This is just a tactic that is not an aesthetically pleasing play, and I think the competition committee is going to take a look at it.”
The play is basically a QB sneak, that some call a “tush push” because under the current rules teammates are allowed to push the QB forward from behind. Pushing the runner to advance him forward has been legal in the NFL since 2005. The Eagles used the play more than any other in their 2022 season and as the NFL contemplates 31 other teams all using the play with the same frequency, many NFL experts feel the NFL Competition Committee will take some action.
Comprised of owners (John Mara), executives (Stephen Jones, Chris Grier, Rich McKay, Katie Blackburn and Ozzie Newsome) and coaches (Frank Reich, Ron Rivera, Mike Tomlin and Mike Vrabel), the Competition Committee meets each year to propose rule changes, which are then submitted to the league’s owners for approval, needing a 75-percent majority (24 of 32 votes) to pass.
Here are some possibilities in my opinion. Full disclosure I am a life long Eagles fan but pretty lukewarm on the QB sneak “tush push.”
Leave it Alone
Football is always evolving. While the play has a gaudy success rate at present– defensive coordinators and coaches are hard at work to solve it. Like everything else in football that is used with regularity… the success ratio will come back to earth
Ban the Tush Push
Many argue that it’s an ugly play that is unstoppable. If that is truly the case, over time, banning could possibly make sense. When I was a kid the video game Tecmo Bowl 2 had a similar play. Cap Boso was a video game tight end that never failed to get 3 yards, and even as children, we got bored and said, you can’t just run this play over and over.
Modify the Rule
This is my favorite choice. If I were king of the NFL, I’d let teams do it, only on their side of the 50, or “their own territory” as the football folks say. It makes the stakes a little higher if you fail and give the game less punts.
Again, these are just one persons very amateur opinion. What’s yours?