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NFL rules killing the game

As an initiative to assist in the prevention of injuries to professional athletes in the NFL (National Football League), the league is implementing drastic rule changes to create a safer environment for all players involved. However, it is with these rules that have completely changed the NFL to the point where it has become unrecognizable  leaving players, coaches and fans wondering what has happened to the sport they had once grown up to love.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is the man behind the vigorous rule changes that are currently effecting the game today, some for the better, and others for the worse. Goodell, as reported by 'Nate Davis, USA TODAY sports', claims that his greatest fear is that "an NFL player is going to die on the field" (published 2013). This is a legitimate and realistic concern that the NFL does have to take into account when legislating rules regarding the sport. However, the NFL will be dangerous regardless of the sudden rule changes in an attempt to remove vicious hits.

"The National Football League is slowly destroying every single principle that the game of football was founded upon" claims an article from "" (published in 2011). This is clearly evident when watching the game as a spectator, seeing the brutality and physical nature of the sport gradually decaying as the years have progressed with Roger Goodell as commissioner. The game has gone soft. The fans can see it, the players can see it and the coaches can see it. It is one thing to protect the health of players, but it is a completely separate thing to turn the sport into a joke.

Enforcing a new kick-off rule in order to reduce the number of kick-off returns, as well as the new rule which states that a running back cannot deliver a forceful blow with the crown of his helmet outside the tackle box, are two rules that have been applied to 'protect players'. So far, the general view regarding these rules have been mixed at best. With Goodell refusing to back down from the rule changes, the NFL community has clearly voiced its displeasure with the sudden overprotectiveness of the NFL.

The running back rule stated in the previous paragraph has instigated an up roar amongst past and current running backs, including Eric Dickerson (single season rushing leader, and hall of fame running back). "I think it's a bad rule. Mostly because it's a natural reaction. You'll never be able to police it. Running backs have to be able to protect themselves and doing that is protecting yourself" Dickerson told in an interview regarding the rule with Mike Freeman (published 2013). Goodell is slowly taking away the players rights to play the sport.

The NFL needs to begin to understand that the sport is dangerous. People get hurt, that's the game, that's what the players sign up for. And although player safety is a very serious issue, Goodell needs to understand that adding these new rules are killing the sport. If the NFL keeps implementing rules to remove big hits the NFL will no longer exist. 

I'd love to hear others thoughts on this issue.

Nate Davis, USA TODAY article (Paragraph 2 quote) - article (paragraph 3 quote) –

Mike Freeman article featuring Eric Dickerson (Paragraph 5 quote) -

(also, if i have done anything wrong with referencing my sources or if I'm not allowed to do anything I have done, please let me know. i dont want to be doing anything illegal or anything like that. thank you)