The Drive with Jody Oehler

The Drive with Jody Oehler

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How to Fix NFL Overtime

The NFL OT’s rules are trash.

Before you disagree, just take a second to think about what you are disagreeing about. A vote for the current OT rules is a vote against us getting more of Mahomes versus Allen.

In the micro sense, if you like the overtime rules, you didn’t like the Chiefs/Bills game.

In a big picture context, if you like the overtime rules you still like coins determining legacies.

I have no problem if the league wants to keep its current overtime rules for the regular season. We don’t need players physically extending themselves in the regular season beyond what is already asked of them. 

In the postseason, its a different story. Seasons cannot end over a coin toss. 

Before you exclaim the Bills should’ve played defense with :13 seconds left, consider this: Overtime is its own entity. Its essentially 0-0 and the game is starting over. It doesn’t matter how we got to overtime, only that we are in overtime. Its not a continuation of regulation, otherwise there’s no need for a coin toss in the first place, just give the ball to the Bills to start since the Chiefs were the last to score in regulation.

If overtime is its own entity, we need to treat it as such. Its not equitable to have one team be able to use only their strength to win (KC’s offense) while hiding their weakness on the sideline (KC’s defense) only to have their opponent be forced to win or lose their game with only their weakness (Buffalo’s defense) on the field while their strength is sidelined (Buffalo’s offense).

Put more simply: the Chiefs shouldn’t have won the game with 10 unanswered points after their defense was as culpable for potentially losing as Buffalo’s was.

Here's the simple, quick fix:

Each team gets to touch the ball on offense. A pick six or fumble return TD ends the game. After each team gets to touch the ball on offense, it reverts to the current rules with a FG giving the ball back and a TD ensuring the win.

It was an amazing weekend of playoff football. It was worth all of our time which is a more valuable way of summing up the weekend than if it was the greatest.

The only loser was the NFL’s rule book. And the Buffalo Bills.

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