Nfl Rule Changes

3046 words 13 pages
Rule changes in the NFL have been made throughout the history of the league to improve the game, make it more exciting and reduce the risk of injury. Safety rules are one of the most important and effective ways in which the NFL and its owners can help protect the health of players. By helping to identify, promote and enforce safe on-field conduct (in concert with off-the-field education and policies), the league seeks to preserve both the health of players and the integrity of the game.

The NFL has established a strong set of rules through the years focused on player safety, designed to promote fair competition while attempting to minimize risk of harm to the player. While many of these rules have focused on reducing contact to the
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Penalty: 15 yards.
1974
■Eligible receivers who take a position more than two yards from the tackle, whether on or behind the line, may not be blocked below the waist at or behind the line of scrimmage.
■No receiver can be blocked below the waist after moving beyond the line of scrimmage.
■An offensive player who is aligned in a position more than two yards laterally outside of the offensive tackle may not contact an opponent below the waist if the blocker is moving toward the position of the ball either at the snap or after it is made, and contact occurs within an area three yards on either side of the line of scrimmage. Penalty: 15 yards for an illegal crackback block.
1976
■A defender cannot place a hand or hands on a teammate to gain additional height in an attempt to block a kick.
■A defender is not permitted to run or dive into a ball carrier who has fallen to the ground untouched.
1977
■It is illegal for a defensive lineman to strike an opponent above the shoulders (head slap) during his initial charge. (Previously, it was legal only during the first step.)
■The crackback prohibition is extended to running backs who move outside the tight end and back inside to deliver a block below the waist.
■It is illegal for a wide receiver to clip an opponent anywhere (including in the legal clipping zone).
1979
■Mandatory equipment is specified for all players to wear during a game.
■Players on the receiving team are prohibited

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