If you're in the entertainment business, be entertaining. That's why I love Skip Bayless. He's not afraid to be a showman for our entertainment, while a sea of insecure sports media folks shutter at the idea of being wrong. You can never cash in all those times you won the argument, but Skip sure can cash in on his ratings. I simply love when people and leagues don't masquerade as sports ombudsman or record-book keepers, when in fact, only ego and the idea of dignity separates Sports Illustrated from TMZ Sports. So, naturally, I love the NFL's willingness to inject even more amusement into the most amusing sports product on TV.
The NFL will be experimenting with an alternative to onside kicks during the Pro Bowl, which will allow teams to try to convert a quasi 4th and 15 from their own 25-yard line. If a team doesn't convert, the opposing team gets the ball at that spot. Awesome.
The NFL, already the most eyeball-demanding sport in America, is thinking about becoming even more titillating. The onside kick has become obsolete, and kickoffs are the rare moments during NFL games where going to the kitchen to grab a beer feels safe. If this 15-yard try experiment is implemented full-time, it'll be another example of the league that draws the widest audience trimming the fat, and becoming even more entertaining. Perfect. The NFL reminds you of all great attention-getters. Howard Stern, Connor McGregor, Kanye West, Kim Kardashian. Heavily criticized, massively consumed.
There are two residual impacts I can see the 15-yard attempt having on the NFL.
A) It would further the NFL's path to making playcaller/quarterback combinations the most important thing in pro football. You know who's good on down-and-distance? Andy Reid, Josh McDaniels, Sean McVay and yours truly, Kliff Kingsbury. You know who's got the arm/legs to make it happen? Mahomes, Watson, Wilson and Murray.
B) It would make comebacks more accomplishable. The holy grail of NFL viewing is watching Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, or more recently, Patrick Mahomes storm back to erase a deficit and take the lead. If the 15-yard try is implemented, those moments will go from few and far between, to massively attainable.
Sign me up. Oh, and you're welcome.