Friday, February 10, 2012

Fixing The Safety

Let's face it, folks: it mostly sucks to play defense in the Inter Continental Football Association. And the NFL, too. You can only hurt RBs and OLs, you need a signed warrant to touch a non-running white QB, you get national attention when you screw up, you don't make the money of the offensive guys, and if you don't have difficulty walking in your '40s and severe head trauma in your '50s, it generally means that you were a wuss. You do get to celebrate a lot and make good coin, but for the most part, you are the bassist and drummer in the band to the offense's singer and guitarist; necessary, but lacking in the post-gig sexual service.

So can't we, just for funsies, throw these guys a few bones with one exciting and thoroughly reasonable rule changes?

Just make the safety minus two points, rather than 2 positive ones, and make the opponent take the free kick from their goal line.

Right away, I make defenses want these things even more, since there will be a race to be the first team to not just get a shutout, but make the opposition go negative. And since defenses are ranked by points against, the negative score helps in the ranking they care about. (I'd argue the same thing for defensive touchdowns, but let's take this one step at a time.) You also make punting from midfield a little exciting, and anything that makes punting more exciting is a win. Heck, the whole thing might even make for more offense, since teams will be even more likely to gamble for the score and open themselves up for the big 95+ yard score.

So let's go negative, NFL. Throw the defense a bone for once. Reward the most entertaining rare play in football -- the not so humble safety. It's only right.

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