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Wednesday open thread: Should the NFL make defensive pass interference a 15-yard max penalty?

Would you approve of this rule change?

San Francisco 49ers v Detroit Lions Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

As all 32 NFL teams descend upon Indianapolis for the 2018 NFL Combine, the league is beginning to prepare for the owners meeting next month. The Competition Committee has been working this offseason to repair a few broken things, most notably, the much-maligned catch rules.

But one of the more controversial ideas being proposed could drastically change the passing game in today’s NFL. According to Mark Maske of The Washington Post, the NFL is considering capping defensive pass interference penalties at 15 yards. That means no more spot fouls beyond 15 yards. No more 40-yard penalties. No more record-breaking penalties from Nevin Lawson.

However, some don’t like the rule. The biggest criticism of the rule change is that it would incentivize defensive backs to purposely tackle receivers when beat deep, since a 15-yard penalty is much more preferable to giving up a huge pass play.

So today’s Question of the Day is:

Would you approve a rule change that would cap pass interference penalties at 15 yards?

My answer: Absolutely. I have been pushing for this rule change for years now. In fact, I’ve already written about this on three separate occasions. My argument can essentially be broken down into three points:

  1. Pass interference is nearly impossible for refs to accurately call in real time. Therefore, the impact of the call should be minimized. Highly subjective/inaccurate calls should never carry this much weight.
  2. There is little evidence to support the claims that defenders would increase the amount of times they purposely interfere (it doesn’t happen in college, where this rule already exists).
  3. There’s very little officials can do to make pass interference more accurately called. So the best solution to the problem is to simply limit the impact of said call.

Your turn.


Do you approve of making defensive pass interference at 15-yard max penalty?

This poll is closed

  • 67%
    (490 votes)
  • 32%
    (238 votes)
728 votes total Vote Now

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