The XFL’s vision to reimagine football is underway and a number of modifications have been made to the beautiful game already with league commissioner Oliver Luck championing the changes. One of the changes that have created divided opinions among fans is the XFL’s plan to eliminate the kneel down with the new clock rule.
Thomas Bassinger of the Tampa Bay Times talked about the kneel down in his article about the differences between the XFL and NFL. Under “The Comeback Period”, Bassinger wrote about the kneel down and commissioner Luck explanation for its elimination.
“In the NFL, the game clock stops with two minutes left in the second quarter, two minutes left in the fourth quarter, after an incomplete pass, when a player runs out of bounds or when a team calls a timeout. In the XFL, the clock will stop after every play during the final two minutes of each half.”
“We didn’t want a team to be able to have three downs where they just kneel it and burn off 1:40,” Luck said. “A kneel-down — as a quarterback I loved it (he played for the Houston Oilers from 1982 to 1986) — but it’s also a nothing play.”
He calls the final two minutes “The Comeback Period” because we should see a bunch more drives than we’re used to. The goal, of course, is to not only increase the number of games that are decided in the final minutes but also hold the audience’s attention longer, no matter the actual probability of a comeback.
After all, late-game comebacks are rarer than we think. Over the past 10 seasons in the NFL, teams that had a lead after three quarters went on to win more than 80 percent of the time.
Fans have reacted to the rule change on the xflboard and there have been divided opinions. A user going by the name Tank55 argued the rule change is altering one of football’s greatest feature and said the XFL is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist.
Another user MikeMitchell was in support of the elimination of the kneel down and said: “it’s a meaningless play that goes against the competitive nature of games.” According to MikeMitchell, the rule change will increase offensive plays and keeps teams alive in games.
Some of XFL new rules will be implemented in test matches to see how they fair and the elimination of the kneel down will undoubtedly be tried out. Is the elimination of the kneel down one of the reimagations of football you support? Let us know your opinion in the comment section.
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