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Thread: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

      
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    Default NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    While they didn't refer to it as the "Steeler Rule", the folks at Sirius NFL Radio are already doing so....

    NFL to punish teams for flagrant hits
    Associated Press
    May 24, 2011

    INDIANAPOLIS -- The NFL will punish teams next season if their players commit multiple flagrant hits that result in fines.

    The punishment will be financial, although league vice president Adolpho Birch said Tuesday he didn't rule out commissioner Roger Goodell applying further sanctions such as stripping clubs of draft choices.

    Citing the "notion of club accountability," Birch says details such as the amount of the fines against clubs, or how many player fines would trigger punishment, have not been determined.

    "As a club's total increases to a certain threshold, we will enforce some ... payback to encourage clubs to stay below that threshold," Birch said. "We're looking at a system similar to one we instituted a couple years ago with off-field conduct."

    The NFL began a crackdown on illegal hits, particularly those to defenseless players, last October. It threatened suspensions, but no players were suspended. However, Ray Anderson, the league's chief disciplinarian, has said suspensions will be considered for egregious hits this season.

    Now, the clubs are being put on notice as well as the players that illegal hits will result in substantial discipline.

    Birch would not identify which teams from 2010 would have been subject to fines had the policy been in place, but did say at least three teams might have been punished.

    One player, Pittsburgh All-Pro linebacker James Harrison, was fined $100,000 for flagrant hits last season.

    "We'll check the number of fines and the level of fines going out for infractions that relate to various player safety violations," Birch said. "Particularly head and helmet issues."

    The 32 owners voted unanimously Tuesday to approve rules amendments for player safety, including a measure aimed at keeping a player from launching himself into a defenseless opponent. A 15-yard penalty will result for anyone who leaves both feet before contact to spring forward and upward into an opponent and delivers a blow to the helmet with any part of his helmet.

    Such tackles will also be subject to fines.

    The definition of a defenseless receiver already has been extended. Now, a receiver who has not had time to protect himself or has not clearly become a runner even if both feet are on the ground is considered defenseless.

    Defenseless players cannot be hit in the head or neck area with the helmet, facemask, forearm or shoulder. The definition of such players now includes those throwing a pass; attempting or completing a catch without having time to ward off or avoid contact; a runner whose forward progress has been stopped by a tackler; kickoff or punt returners while the ball is in the air; kickers or punters during a kick or a return; a quarterback during a change of possession; a player who receives a blindside block from a blocker moving toward his own end zone.

    Penalized players are subject to being ejected for flagrant fouls.

    "This should permanently change the mentality of a defensive player trying to loosen the ball to change your target point," said competition committee co-chairman Rich McKay, president of the Atlanta Falcons. "There were too many hits in the last three years that were legal but we not ones we were comfortable that the player who got hit had any chance to protect himself."

    Also, hits to the head of a passer that are not considered "forcible" blows will not be penalized.

    "We are not saying to take the physicality out of the game in any way, shape or form," McKay said. "There are still lots of hits that are legal."

    The NFL also canceled next month's rookie symposium.

    "We waited as long as we possibly could," Birch said. "The rookie symposium is an extremely large, complex event that requires a lot of people from an attendance standpoint. Based on the uncertainty in the labor situation, it's to the point we needed to be fair to those who would come to help us put it on."

    The symposium, which was to begin June 26 in Canton, Ohio, instructs rookies in money management and life skills and allows them to meet current and former players.

    Teams and their draftees have not been allowed to communicate since the NFL gained a stay in court upholding the lockout. The league's appeal of an injunction lifting it will be heard in U.S. District Court on June 3.

    "Obviously I'm disappointed because I think the symposium is a valuable learning and bonding experience," player agent David Canter said. One of his clients, linebacker Doug Hogue, was drafted by Detroit.

    Agent Ben Dogra, who along with partner Tom Condon represents five first-round draft choices this year, didn't expect the symposium to take place.

    "The truth is, how can you cancel an event that isn't supposed to happen anyway since there is a lockout," Dogra said. "The NFL is closed for business. Thus, to hold a rookie symposium wouldn't make any logical sense."

    http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=6583638
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    .
    .
    Four quick thoughts on the NFL's latest rules changes addressing player safety:
    By Mike Sando

    [HIGH-LIGHT]* The changes attack the culture.[/HIGH-LIGHT] Previous changes have emphasized specific rules. These changes seek to address the broader culture that encourages such hits even when in violation of the rules. I'm not sure whether fining teams will make a huge difference, but if the commissioner is serious about going so far as to strip teams of draft choices, you can bet coaches will focus on playing within the rules. The old-school attitude will resist these changes, but if the greater emphasis leads to improved tackling at the expense of reckless hitting, everyone wins. I just have a hard time believing the league would actually take away draft choices.

    [HIGH-LIGHT]* The rules themselves make sense.[/HIGH-LIGHT] Reasonable protections for defenseless players are good for all. These latest changes sound reasonable. Players should not be able to launch themselves forward and upward to use their helmets as weapons against other players' helmets. Receivers who have not had time to protect themselves after making receptions should not have to worry about defenders hitting them in the head or neck area with helmets, facemasks, forearms or shoulders. Football will remain a collision sport. These rules will not make it otherwise.

    [HIGH-LIGHT]* Motives are secondary.[/HIGH-LIGHT] The labor situation invites skepticism as to the NFL's intentions. The league stands to gain politically by pushing for measures to protect players. These changes cost the league nothing while allowing owners to claim they're looking out for players, even as they lock them out. These changes also put owners in better position to say they've been proactive should a player die from injuries suffered on the field. Players' skepticism is justified, but if the changes make sense, motives matter less.

    [HIGH-LIGHT]* Huge hits are fun to watch.[/HIGH-LIGHT] I'll admit to enjoying those old clips showing Dick "Night Train" Lane nearly decapitating opponents with tactics that would draw suspensions in the current game (go to the 2:40 mark of this video for evidence, and watch the clip at 4:50 in particular). I'll agree with Deacon Jones when he says he could not be himself under the current rules. Hard-nosed defensive players would not be hard-nosed defensive players if they didn't grumble every time the league tried to legislate violence from the game. Defensive players should be frustrated every time the NFL makes changes benefiting their offensive counterparts. The issue, however, is to what degree the NFL should allow unnecessary, violent hits to the head and neck amid mounting evidence of the long-term consequences.

    http://sports.espn.go.com/blog/nfcwe...orth-defending
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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    I'm still thinking through the possibilities with this. I have a feeling that it'll create a whole new range of grey areas. It will be interesting to see if this changes the calls when players, say, break Roethlisberger's nose.

    They might as well have defined a "defenceless player" as "anyone who doesn't play for the Steelers".

    I think I'm still a little paranoid after chunks of last year...
    'I want rustlers, cut throats, murderers, bounty hunters, desperados, mugs, pugs, thugs, nitwits, halfwits, dimwits, vipers, snipers, con men, Indian agents, Mexican bandits, muggers, buggerers, bushwhackers, hornswogglers, horse thieves, bull dykes, train robbers, bank robbers, ***-kickers, ****-kickers and Methodists.'

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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    Quote Originally Posted by War Machine View Post
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    I'm still thinking through the possibilities with this. I have a feeling that it'll create a whole new range of grey areas. It will be interesting to see if this changes the calls when players, say, break Roethlisberger's nose.

    They might as well have defined a "defenceless player" as "anyone who doesn't play for the Steelers".

    I think I'm still a little paranoid after chunks of last year...
    Well... I personally think the whole thing is "bull****".... Especially the part where team organizations can start being fined....

    ... Don't get me wrong... If they make these rules "for safety", I have no issue with it if it's clearly thought-through.... I won't say weather if or if not I believe it's actually targeting the Steelers... But if you look at it all by definition, several players are gonna have to re-train how they hit and tackle players on the opposition....

    Harrison and a few others are gonna have to go "back to school" and train themselves differently now on tackling and hitting... The question is... How will it affect our style of D......
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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    Quote Originally Posted by NKySteeler View Post
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    I won't say weather if or if not I believe it's actually targeting the Steelers...
    Ok,then I'll say it.Its blatantly targeting the Steelers..........and if it isn't,then they sure as hell are the example!

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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    One thing you can count on in Goodell's NFL - that's change. Change for the sake of change.

    At what point does it stop being "football" and start being "dancing with a funny looking ball"?
    Write drunk, edit sober - Ernest Hemingway

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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    Quote Originally Posted by Les View Post
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    Ok,then I'll say it.Its blatantly targeting the Steelers..........and if it isn't,then they sure as hell are the example!
    Yea.... My "politically correct" talk only works at certain times.... LoL!.....

    ... It is "balatant"... And I actually am worried to see how this all pans-out in the next season.....
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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    nges on illegal tackles irk Steelers
    "I'm not sure I like it being referred to as The Steelers Rule." -- Art Rooney II
    Thursday, May 26, 2011
    By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    Another NFL rule, another named in honor of the Steelers, although the team president does not embrace the reference.

    For a team associated with the Rooney Rule, the Hines Ward Rule and rules aimed at neutering the 1970s Steel Curtain, add one that some members of the media have dubbed "The Steelers Rule."

    The rule, which really is not yet a rule, includes possible fines and the docking of draft choices if a team's players ring up enough infractions. And it was coupled with actual new rules passed by the league owners Tuesday that widened the description of illegal tackles the Steelers so loudly fought against last season.

    "I'm not sure I like it being referred to as The Steelers Rule," Art Rooney II said Wednesday. "It's a policy the commissioner is still considering and has not put into effect yet but he intends to put it into effect."

    Rooney raised concerns last fall that the NFL might go too far when it started its crackdown with fines and threatened suspensions in October. He took a conservative approach to the latest move for punishing teams.

    "I would hope it's something used on rare occasions and only in exceptional situations. I think our rules are adequate and I think everyone is trying to adjust here."

    Steelers All-Pro linebacker James Harrison, who led the NFL with $100,000 in fines last season, did not take kindly to the new rules that will expand the description of an illegal hit and of a defenseless player.

    "I'm absolutely sure now after this latest rule change that the people making the rules at the NFL are idiots," Harrison wrote Tuesday night on Twitter.

    The rules passed by a 32-0 vote of the owners, which means, by association, Rooney was included in Harrison's assessment of those who passed the rules.

    "Look, he's entitled to express his opinion," Rooney said. "I probably would have preferred him to use a little different description to his disagreement. There's not much I can say about it; it's not like I can even call him up and talk to him."

    The NFL forbids management to speak to players about anything regarding football during the lockout.

    Rooney applauds the attempt to make the game safer, but believes it makes it tougher to officiate.

    "I think the intent is good, they're trying to address player safety. We still have some concern about how it will be officiated and, not so much taking a shot at the officials, I think they'll do as good a job as they can, but it's a very fine line asking the officials to call that. We'll see how it plays out."

    The changes include a widening description of "launching" and preventing high blows to a receiver before he can get two feet on the ground after making a catch and getting into a position to protect himself.

    "I think it's a fairly significant change," Rooney said of the receiver rule. "It was one of the reasons that it got tabled at our March meeting because a lot of coaches were concerned about it."

    Several defensive teammates had more measured responses than Harrison's to the changes, but their message was similar: It's not easy playing defense these days.

    Fellow linebacker LaMarr Woodley followed with his own Twitter comment that "im not sorry we hit 2 hard."

    "Their intent is to make the league more safe," nose tackle Chris Hoke said Wednesday. "But the bottom line on the football field is guys who weigh 350 pounds are flying at full speed trying to block you and you're trying to keep Joshua Cribbs from getting a first down and you dive at him. It's hard. Games can be won or lost on that."

    "I don't like it," linebacker Larry Foote said. "If you start messing with it, you play with fire. They need to be careful with refs throwing the flag. I'm all for protecting guys who are defenseless, but as long as your head is up, everything should be fair. See what you hit, head up, that's what I was always taught."

    Safety Ryan Clark did not see much in the rules changes that will affect how defenders play.

    "It's not a big change for us, it's a change for the organization," he said. "I don't really know how it affects us. It's just another way to seem like we're trying to do something to protect the players. I just don't see how effective they'll be.

    "The only thing that is new is the organization can be fined for multiple fines or infractions by one particular team. Some of the rules were put into affect during the season; maybe it's them just making these things official."

    However, Foote worries it will make defensive players paranoid about hitting and tackling to the point that it could change the way the game is played, and tamper with its appeal to fans.

    "We all signed up for this, we know the risks," Foote said. "That's what makes the game great. I'm all for cleaning it up but you have to be careful with flags."

    Foote believes it would be better to fine a player later than throw a flag on a play that looks as if it was an illegal hit but later determined it was not. That happened to Clark last season when the Steelers were penalized 15 yards for his Dec. 19 hit on New York Jets receiver Braylon Edwards. The league looked at it and decided not to fine Clark, in essence declaring the hit to be legal.

    The crackdown last season affected how players approached some hits, including Harrison, Foote said.

    "I remember me and Harrison talked about it after the Miami game. There was a running back going across the middle. I saw James ease up and I made the tackle real funny thinking that Harrison was going to clean him up."

    Foote predicted there will be many more missed tackles because of the new rules. Hoke believes players will adjust.

    "You can," Hoke said. "It'll take time to get a feel for what they're calling -- in the preseason there will be some calls. You still have to play hard, fly around and play Steelers defense, but at the end of the day, things that are obvious like launching, you can't do that. You have to just run through them I guess."

    One rule change defenders actually will like removes the penalty for a defender inadvertently brushing a quarterback's helmet with his hand.

    "One time somebody swiped his hand on Peyton Manning's helmet and got a 15-yarder," Rooney said. "They added the word 'forcibly' to that rule. It takes away that kind of thing, if somebody's hand grazes a helmet. It was an improvement and a clarification."

    Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11146...#ixzz1NUGmFDEq
    I love James Harrison's comment!!

    POLITICIANS AND DIAPERS SHOULD BE CHANGED OFTEN AND FOR THE SAME REASON!

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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    The litmus test for me is this-I grew up in Pittsburgh,graduated hs in '69,and I learned to love this game with the Steelers of that era-the greatest teams ever in the sport.COULD THOSE TEAMS PLAY THEIR GAME-AND OURS-UNDER THESE RULES?F**K NO!Sorry,but to me this bullsh*t means they are changing the essence of the game I grew to love with our teams.And it definitely targets our team,because no other team has ever played D the way we did,and still do.So.to all the league bureaucrats and officials,I hope you choke on this sh*t.QUIT SCREWIN" WITH OUR GAME!!!

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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    Guys, I don't know if can stomach the NFL anymore. I'm not even that excited for the next season. It's a sad state of affairs and I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one that thinks that.

    I just heard Jaime Dukes and Warren Sapp's comments about James Harrison and enough's enough. Those two can go **** each other in the bathroom at a truck stop.

    At least I still have the Pens and a decently run sports league in the NHL. It's about the only left.

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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    Quote Originally Posted by JerryGlanville View Post
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    Guys, I don't know if can stomach the NFL anymore. I'm not even that excited for the next season. It's a sad state of affairs and I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one that thinks that.

    I just heard Jaime Dukes and Warren Sapp's comments about James Harrison and enough's enough. Those two can go **** each other in the bathroom at a truck stop.

    At least I still have the Pens and a decently run sports league in the NHL. It's about the only left.
    You are definitely not the only one. I am on the edge and growing sicker of the league each year. I have already decided to cancel my NFL package on Directv. But if it continues the sport I have loved since I was 7 will lose this fan.
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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    Quote Originally Posted by JerryGlanville View Post
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    Those two can go **** each other in the bathroom at a truck stop.
    I'm sure they already have.


    Anyway,I totally agree with your comments.

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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    Sapp absolutly hates the Steelers. Hell, he said Troy was not even in the same ball park as Ed Reed. The guy was over-rated as a player and sucks as a TV guy.

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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    Quote Originally Posted by ScoreKeeper View Post
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    Sapp absolutly hates the Steelers. Hell, he said Troy was not even in the same ball park as Ed Reed. The guy was over-rated as a player and sucks as a TV guy.
    And he sucked on Dancing With The Stars too.
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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    Quote Originally Posted by bdeff View Post
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    You are definitely not the only one. I am on the edge and growing sicker of the league each year. I have already decided to cancel my NFL package on Directv.
    I'm fairly close to doing so as well, especially with all the crap going-on this year... By my account, there will be 10 games available to me (maybe more), so the price just doesn't seem to be worthwhile... Heck, I haven't even purchased any "Steeler gear" this season, which is usually a yearly tradition for me... I still might get the media guide when it's released in August, though...
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    Default Re: NFL enacts "The Steeler Rule"...

    I don't remember if these were posted but I'm going through all of my Steelers feeds and since there are so few of them right now, some are first page dating back 15-20 days. So I didn't want to post a new thread for this stuff and have old news filter through twitter and facebook as being new ...

    ----------------------

    Changes on illegal tackles irk Steelers
    "I'm not sure I like it being referred to as The Steelers Rule." -- Art Rooney II
    Thursday, May 26, 2011
    By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette



    Pam Panchak
    Steelers president Art Rooney II.



    Another NFL rule, another named in honor of the Steelers, although the team president does not embrace the reference.

    For a team associated with the Rooney Rule, the Hines Ward Rule and rules aimed at neutering the 1970s Steel Curtain, add one that some members of the media have dubbed "The Steelers Rule."

    The rule, which really is not yet a rule, includes possible fines and the docking of draft choices if a team's players ring up enough infractions. And it was coupled with actual new rules passed by the league owners Tuesday that widened the description of illegal tackles the Steelers so loudly fought against last season.

    "I'm not sure I like it being referred to as The Steelers Rule," Art Rooney II said Wednesday. "It's a policy the commissioner is still considering and has not put into effect yet but he intends to put it into effect."

    Rooney raised concerns last fall that the NFL might go too far when it started its crackdown with fines and threatened suspensions in October. He took a conservative approach to the latest move for punishing teams.

    "I would hope it's something used on rare occasions and only in exceptional situations. I think our rules are adequate and I think everyone is trying to adjust here."

    Steelers All-Pro linebacker James Harrison, who led the NFL with $100,000 in fines last season, did not take kindly to the new rules that will expand the description of an illegal hit and of a defenseless player.

    "I'm absolutely sure now after this latest rule change that the people making the rules at the NFL are idiots," Harrison wrote Tuesday night on Twitter.

    The rules passed by a 32-0 vote of the owners, which means, by association, Rooney was included in Harrison's assessment of those who passed the rules.

    "Look, he's entitled to express his opinion," Rooney said. "I probably would have preferred him to use a little different description to his disagreement. There's not much I can say about it; it's not like I can even call him up and talk to him."

    The NFL forbids management to speak to players about anything regarding football during the lockout.

    Rooney applauds the attempt to make the game safer, but believes it makes it tougher to officiate.

    "I think the intent is good, they're trying to address player safety. We still have some concern about how it will be officiated and, not so much taking a shot at the officials, I think they'll do as good a job as they can, but it's a very fine line asking the officials to call that. We'll see how it plays out."

    The changes include a widening description of "launching" and preventing high blows to a receiver before he can get two feet on the ground after making a catch and getting into a position to protect himself.

    "I think it's a fairly significant change," Rooney said of the receiver rule. "It was one of the reasons that it got tabled at our March meeting because a lot of coaches were concerned about it."

    Several defensive teammates had more measured responses than Harrison's to the changes, but their message was similar: It's not easy playing defense these days.
    Fellow linebacker LaMarr Woodley followed with his own Twitter comment that "im not sorry we hit 2 hard."

    "Their intent is to make the league more safe," nose tackle Chris Hoke said Wednesday. "But the bottom line on the football field is guys who weigh 350 pounds are flying at full speed trying to block you and you're trying to keep Joshua Cribbs from getting a first down and you dive at him. It's hard. Games can be won or lost on that."

    "I don't like it," linebacker Larry Foote said. "If you start messing with it, you play with fire. They need to be careful with refs throwing the flag. I'm all for protecting guys who are defenseless, but as long as your head is up, everything should be fair. See what you hit, head up, that's what I was always taught."

    Safety Ryan Clark did not see much in the rules changes that will affect how defenders play.

    "It's not a big change for us, it's a change for the organization," he said. "I don't really know how it affects us. It's just another way to seem like we're trying to do something to protect the players. I just don't see how effective they'll be.

    "The only thing that is new is the organization can be fined for multiple fines or infractions by one particular team. Some of the rules were put into affect during the season; maybe it's them just making these things official."

    However, Foote worries it will make defensive players paranoid about hitting and tackling to the point that it could change the way the game is played, and tamper with its appeal to fans.

    "We all signed up for this, we know the risks," Foote said. "That's what makes the game great. I'm all for cleaning it up but you have to be careful with flags."
    Foote believes it would be better to fine a player later than throw a flag on a play that looks as if it was an illegal hit but later determined it was not. That happened to Clark last season when the Steelers were penalized 15 yards for his Dec. 19 hit on New York Jets receiver Braylon Edwards. The league looked at it and decided not to fine Clark, in essence declaring the hit to be legal.

    The crackdown last season affected how players approached some hits, including Harrison, Foote said.

    "I remember me and Harrison talked about it after the Miami game. There was a running back going across the middle. I saw James ease up and I made the tackle real funny thinking that Harrison was going to clean him up."


    Foote predicted there will be many more missed tackles because of the new rules. Hoke believes players will adjust.

    "You can," Hoke said. "It'll take time to get a feel for what they're calling -- in the preseason there will be some calls. You still have to play hard, fly around and play Steelers defense, but at the end of the day, things that are obvious like launching, you can't do that. You have to just run through them I guess."

    One rule change defenders actually will like removes the penalty for a defender inadvertently brushing a quarterback's helmet with his hand.

    "One time somebody swiped his hand on Peyton Manning's helmet and got a 15-yarder," Rooney said. "They added the word 'forcibly' to that rule. It takes away that kind of thing, if somebody's hand grazes a helmet. It was an improvement and a clarification."


    Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11146...#ixzz1OtM4qtpP
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