NFL goal post uprights will be raised from 30 to 35 feet for the 2014 season to help make sure field goal and extra point kickers are on the mark, one of several new ideas approved this week by the National Football League Competition Committee.
The suggestion to increase the goal post height came from the New England Patriots and is intended to leave less doubt on the field especially in terms of field goal kicks which often put the football high above the uprights, Fox Sports reported.
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Other approved changes include keeping the game clock running after a quarterback is sacked within the last two minutes of a half, and to allow coaches to challenge all loose football recoveries on the field, also known as the "NaVorro Bowman Rule," USA Today reported.
The committee nixed a proposal to move the hike for the extra point attempt after a touchdown from the 2-yard line to the 25-yard line, which reportedly had been floated by the New England Patriots. The committee instead opted to experiment with a 20-yard line snap in the first two weeks of preseason play, which would effectively make it a 38-yard try for any kicker, Bloomberg News reported.
"The committee was concerned about a rule being implemented without having the opportunity to go through the unintended consequences," Jeff Fisher, a committee member who is the St. Louis Rams coach, said after the meeting. "We all feel like we need to do something, we’re just not quite sure what we are going to do with it yet."
The rejected 25 yard line proposal was an attempt to make the extra point kick less of an automatic score, considering that upwards of 98 percent of extra point kicks result in one-point scores.
"It could definitely be amended by another concept of having a competitive extra point, instead of having one that's over 99 and a half percent successful," Patriot's coach Bill Belichick said following the NFL Competition Committee's decision, CBS Sports reported.
"I don't think that's a competitive play."
The committee also banned goal post dunks, a common form of celebration by some players following a touchdown score and promised to enforce existing 15-yard penalties for taunting and other unsportsmanlike conduct on the field.
"In the past, taunting/sportsmanship was in the back of the book under points of emphasis. It is now a front-of-the-book issue," Fisher added. "We want to put it back in the back of the book."
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