The League

Zach Leibowitz
Sideline Reporter

Zach Leibowitz

A former sideline reporter for ESPN

Keep the Ties


Can you imagine being forced to watch one more second of the Eagles-Bengals game yesterday? Neither deserved to win. Both deserved to lose. So you settle it and give them a tie. That's basically the Scarlet Letter in the standings revealing to all that you really stunk up the joint.

Realistically, there aren't that many ties in the NFL so I don't think it's worth changing the overtime system in the regular season. Sure, a handful of games go into OT, but usually one team finds a way to kick a game-winning FG.

Besides, what would be the alternatives? Do what college football does and give pro offenses the ball at the 25 yard-line already within a pro kicker's FG range? Pro football continues to rely on the almighty coin toss -- so much so that it's a heads-or-tails Super Bowl bet in Las Vegas every February. And winning the toss in OT doesn't guarantee a win. Just yesterday, the Eagles won the toss, but not the game.

Frankly, after five 15-minute NFL quarters, that's enough. That's enough wear and tear on the body. And just look at the coincidence of the scheduling, the Bengals suit up Thursday night in Pittsburgh. That's a pretty short turnaround for a team who just played four hours of football.

The NFL's OT system, while controversial, isn't as bad as it appears. If you were good enough to begin with, you should have won the game in regulation. If you're the Eagles or Bengals yesterday, then you had another 15 minutes to score.

Quit complaining if you lose the coin toss to begin OT. Try stopping your opponent instead. If you can't, then you aren't the better team and don't deserve to win the game.

There are few ties to begin with because talented NFL professionals are given more than enough time to win or lose a football game. If they can't determine a regular season game within the 75 minutes they're given, then give them the embarrassing tie, and call it a day, for everyone's sake.

By Zach Leibowitz  |  November 17, 2008; 12:15 PM ET  | Category:  NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: Worth Watching Again | Next: They Deserved It


Please email us to report offensive comments.

This is a great point. Those teams sucked yesterday. A tie will make them all remember it for years to come

Posted by: Jon - Ann Arbor, MI | November 17, 2008 2:27 PM

I agree that neither team deserved to win.
I must add that the college way of OT is totally insane.
I just wish the NFL would allow each offense to have the ball at least once. After that sudden death should determine the outcome. I hate the coin toss nonsense.

Posted by: Stevie | November 17, 2008 3:45 PM

I have no problem with ties in the NFL. After all, many of the great ones- Halas, Brown, Lombardi, Landry- wore ties, and it might be nice to see a few more ties in the league.

Posted by: Emily Latella | November 18, 2008 10:48 AM

I think the current system is fine with the caveat that I would change it from sudden death to a full 15 minute overtime period. Win lose or draw after the 15 minutes. This would give both teams a chance at scoring.

Posted by: Jason - Sacramento, CA | November 18, 2008 3:55 PM

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company