Most of the concerns have focused on the fact that the archaic officiating standards the NFL goes by are in need of a change. I think this argument is clear and valid when you watched blown calls all Sunday long.
Some are calling for a change in officiating. Others are yelling from the rooftops for the NFL competition committee to take a look at the league’s regulations regarding NFL overtime.
For the first time in NFL history, we saw both Conference Championship games need extra time to decide the winner. Looking back at both games, specifically both overtimes, the tale of the tape is much different. One showed the ugliness of the regulations, where one in my opinion showed just how easy it can be to fix.
AFC Championship game
The AFC Championship game between the Patriots and Chiefs looked like another classic Patriots performance. A dominating defensive showing by New England and a genius game plan that was executed to perfection. In the second half though, that game plan fell apart and Pat Mahomes woke up. His performance in the second half solidified to everyone why he is ultimately the MVP this year.
The Chiefs crawled back into the game. They took the ball down the field with only 39 seconds left to tie it up and bring it into overtime. The Chiefs didn’t realize that this was the beginning of the end. Things look bright when Patriots captain Matthew Slater picked heads at the coin toss to begin the NFL overtime. We all know tails never fails. But Patriot magic reared its ugly head again and it landed heads. That is all the Patriots needed. The slow and methodically drive down the field for the game-winning touchdown was hard to watch, but expected. When it was all said and done, we did not get the chance to see the Chiefs be able to rebuttal this drive. A little unfair if you ask me.
NFC Championship game
The other Championship game saw the Rams drive into field goal range at the end of regulation to tie the game up. This NFL overtime was totally different in comparison to the above-mentioned one. Just like the Patriots, the Saints won the coin toss and received the ball first. I think it’s safe to assume once we saw the Saints win toss, we thought the game was over. The plot took a quick turn once the Rams managed to create a turnover and turn it the game-winning field goal.
Both games went into overtime, but only one of them is being heavily scrutinized. Many see that the fact the Chiefs did not have a chance to answer back and force the Patriots to stop them to secure the win is not right for the league and its fans. With that, I have heard a plethora of ideas and concepts to change NFL overtime. What these people are blind to see is that how the NFC Championship game played out is the perfect beginning to how it could change.
NFL Overtime changes
In this current climate in the NFL, defensive stops are at an all-time premium. I have no issue with how the Rams won because they made the stop and scored the points. That to me showed that the Rams were the better team in that NFL overtime. The defensive stop needs to be valued more than the touchdown right now. I think it deserves the ability to win the game in overtime. Imagine just how exciting that AFC Championship game would have been if we had the opportunity to see the Chiefs drive down the field to score to keep their hopes alive.
If the Patriots stop them, game over. If the Chiefs score, it goes on till one team can make a stop and score points in consecutive sequences. When time runs out, well then it ends with the team in the lead.
Fair and simple. The concept of change for NFL overtime does not need to be elaborate or outside of the box. It just needs to be reworked to make it a fair competition. It needs to be in the best interest of the entire league and all of its fans.