Ex-NFL VP of refs describes one huge problem with the league’s new targeting rule

One of the biggest surprises of the NFL’s Annual League Meeting last week came when the league’s 32 owners unanimously voted to pass a new rule that prohibits players from lowering their helmets to initiate contact.

Under the change, a player will be penalized 15 yards — and could be subject to ejection — anytime he lowers his head and uses his helmet to initiate contact against an opponent. Despite the fact that the rule was put in place for player safety, multiple players, including Josh Norman and Richard Sherman, have already come out and ripped the new rule.

Sure, they upgraded at left tackle by trading for Cordy Glenn, but that acquisition—plus the addition of steady linebacker Preston Brown—isn’t enough. The Bengals still lack game-changing players and are putting too much on the shoulders of quarterback Andy Dalton, wide receiver A.J. Green and defensive linemen Geno Atkins, Carlos Dunlap and Michael Johnson.

Dalton has regressed, trouble-making linebacker Vontaze Burfict does more harm than good (and faces another suspension to start the season), the defense lacks teeth altogether (it ranked 30th with just 14 takeaways in 2017) and Glenn’s presence won’t fix a mediocre offensive line.

The Bengals have a better chance at falling to the AFC North basement than slaying the Steelers or Ravens.

Go for it often on fourth down Sure, if that’s what the analytics say.

Use RPOs, otherwise known as run-pass options Definitely. If a non-mobile quarterback like Nick Foles can do it, then certainly just about anyone can.

That’s what happens when you win the Super Bowl. Everyone wants to duplicate your success.

So how do the Eagles stay one step ahead of the competition That’s what Pederson and the Eagles are trying to figure out. In fact, Pederson said he has already started planning offensive schemes with his assistants.

That’s all we do in the mornings, Pederson said. We spend all our time on the offense right now. We’re still working through our scheme…. We’re cranking through the offense still.

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