Get Over It Goodell
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The scoreboard will be an issue. It doesn't matter whether a punter hitting it will be a rare accident, common occurrence or require a punter to be aiming for it. The scoreboard presents a brand new situation to the coaches and NFL coaches aren't about to let a possible advantage go unexplored. As soon as a re-kick was called, the world's finest football minds set to thinking of ways to exploit it. Whether it's the ability to call timeouts at the last second on a field goal attempt, unenforced illegal contact rules, unclear wording in substitution rules, or a giant scoreboard hanging over midfield someone will always try to squeeze an advantage out of it.
So who's at fault for the new loophole? It's popular to blame the "crazy billionaire" Jerry Jones, and it fits nicely into a complaint on the obscene excesses of the new $1.2 billion Cowboy's stadium, but hurting that narrative and Commissioner Goodell's leverage to force a change on Jones is that the board sits 5 feet above the league's required clearance of 85 feet. Jerry Jones' jumbo-tron to end all jumbo-tron's doesn't violate the league's rules. On the other hand the board is able to be lowered and raised, a feature the Cowboys plan on using when hosting concerts at the stadium. If the scoreboard is still functional at the 95 or 100 feet it's capable of being raised to, it's pure stubbornness on Jones' part to not move it away from the reach of punts.
If the mega-scoreboard doesn't function at a higher position, then Goodell is going to have to just get over it and hope that accidental hits are rare, and that no one finds a good way to exploit the stadium's unique feature. Either that, or Goodell needs the league to foot the bill, since the stadium met the insufficient or outdated rules the league had in place at the time. Forcing an owner to shell out more cash because, although the scoreboard meets the league rules it isn't to the commish's liking, wouldn't go over well, especially amongst the owners who pay Goodell's salary.
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Posted by: frantaylor | August 26, 2009 11:33 PM
Posted by: frantaylor | August 26, 2009 11:34 PM
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