With the 2023 NFL Scouting Combine underway this week, the NFL competition committee is meeting to discuss the league’s rules once again. Per Judy Battista, at least one team has proposed that roughing the passer should be a reviewable play, perhaps the first step in coaches being able to challenge flags.
Should the NFL make roughing the passer up for review?
NFL Competition Comm. wrapped up first day of meetings at the Combine. One team has proposed making roughing the passer reviewable by replay. Committee will discuss tomorrow, early indication is little appetite in the room for making it reviewable.— Judy Battista (@judybattista) February 26, 2023
The early and expected indication is that no, this will not happen and it won’t get close. Every year there are rule changes up for debate that have no real shot at being passed and usually it’s whatever hot topic happened the season before. In 2022, that “hot topic” was roughing the passer as many fans felt that refs were usually to quick to throw the flag.
According to Battista, the committee reviewed 80 roughing the passer penalties and found that only three were questionable. They clearly have a different point of view than fans.
Whether fan criticism of “bad penalties” will impact the NFL’s bottom line is unclear, but it’s not happening overnight. Will fans eventually start turning off the NFL? That’s the only message that matters and so far the NFL continues to be by far the most dominant sport and TV show in America.
The criticism of the league and its penalties, whether they are too eager to throw them or not, will not be enough to sway committee opinion. What do you think should happen? Should teams be able to review any penalty?