NFL referee Gerald Austin checks the replay screen as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers host the Philadelphia Eagles Oct. 22, 2006 in Tampa. The Bucs won 23 – 21 on a last-second, 62-yard field goal. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

It’s a safe bet that until the end of time (or football, at least) the NFL will be tinkering with its rules.

The league has released a list of 19 proposed rule changes to be considered next week by the Competition Committee.

Some of these ideas are cool, others… aren’t.

Best ideas

3. By Baltimore; to amend Rule 15, Section 2, Articles 1, 4, and 5 (Instant Replay) to provide each team with three challenges and expand reviewable plays.

The point of review is to get as many plays right as possible. Allowing more challenges would ensure that teams never run out of opportunities to make sure the call is correct and expanding reviewable plays increases the odds that an incorrect ruling can be reversed.

2. By Competition Committee; Eliminates the five-yard penalty for an eligible receiver illegally touching a forward pass after being out of bounds and re-establishing himself inbounds, and makes it a loss of down.

This proposal would help the punishment fit the crime. If you illegally catch a pass, the appropriate penalty is a negation of that catch. You messed up on that down, so you shouldn’t get a new one. The NFL should have more loss-of-down penalties in general.

3. By Washington; to amend Rule 16, Section 1, Articles 1, 4, 6 and 7 (Overtime procedures) to eliminate overtime periods in preseason games.

Most players (and fans) would probably be in favor of eliminating preseason games altogether if that were possible. Since a significant cut-down in the number of exhibition contests in unlikely any time soon, the least the NFL can do is get rid of extra periods that break ties everyone is cool with to declare winners no one cares about.

Worst ideas

3. By Competition Committee; Makes it a foul for delay of game when a team attempts to call a timeout when it is not permitted to do so.

Meh, is this necessary? It’s not like anyone is harmed by a team trying to call a timeout it doesn’t have. Why not just let the referee deny the timeout and move on?

2. By Kansas City; to amend Rule 8, Section 1, Article 2 (Legal Forward Pass) to prohibit quarterbacks from falling to the ground, getting up, and throwing a forward pass.

Why? Any other player is allowed to fall to the ground, stand up and continue the play, so why should QBs be different. Obviously it’s different if they slide feet first, but otherwise the same rules should apply to signal-callers as everyone else.

1. By Carolina; to amend Rule 8, Section 2, Article 1 (Intentional Grounding) to expand the definition of intentional grounding.

What’s wrong with letting someone throw the ball away intentionally anyway? Why does a quarterback have to target a receiver? Who are the refs to tell a player what to do with the ball? If it’s better strategy to throw the ball away, you should be able to throw the ball away. Intentional grounding should be limited, not expanded. Meanwhile, it’s especially odd to see Carolina propose this rule, given that the Panthers have a quarterback who likes to leave the pocket, at which point he’s protected from intentional grounding under current rules.

You can find the full list of rule proposals and who submitted them here.

About Alex Putterman

Alex is a writer and editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. He has written for The Atlantic, VICE Sports,, and more. He is a proud alum of Northwestern University and The Daily Northwestern. You can find him on Twitter @AlexPutterman.