NFL owners approve new replay rules

Posted May 25, 2016

NFL owners approved new replay rules and named Super Bowl sites through 2021:

At spring meetings in Charlotte this week, NFL owners passed an amendment that enables referees to communicate with the officiating department in New York during games.
The adopted rule proposal states that the replay official and designated members of the officiating department at the league office “may consult with the on-field officials to provide information on the correct application of playing rules, including appropriate assessment of penalty yardage, proper down, and status of the game clock.”


The replay system will cover the following play situations (amendments are in bold):
(a) Plays involving possession.

(b) Plays involving touching of either the ball or the ground.

(c) Plays governed by the goal line.

(d) Plays governed by the boundary lines.

(e) Plays governed by the line of scrimmage.

(f) Plays governed by the line to gain.

(g) Number of players on the field at the snap, even when a foul is not called.

(h) Game administration:
    (1) Penalty enforcement.
    (2) Proper down.
    (3) Spot of a foul.
    (4) Status of the game clock.

“We changed the structure and reversed the structure in a very positive way including the fact that Dean Blandino and our New York office will be able to get involved with respect to administrative issues – enforcements of penalties, the clock - which I think could be a positive,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said. “We’ve done that in the postseason in the past and that was a positive change.”


In situations in which time is deemed to have expired during or after the last play of the first or second half, or of an overtime period in the preseason or regular season, or of an overtime in the postseason, a timing error is defined as having occurred only when the visual evidence demonstrates that more than one second should be put on the clock.

In the first half, time shall be restored only if the additional play will be a snap from scrimmage. In the second half, time shall be restored only if it is a one-score game (eight points or less), and the additional play will be a snap from scrimmage by the team that is behind in the score, or by either team if the score is tied. A correction of a timing error for a team timeout may be made only if there is visual evidence of an official’s signal.

Meanwhile, the NFL awarded three new Super Bowl locations to Atlanta (LIII), South Florida (LIV) and Los Angeles (LV). That’s in addition to two that were already announced: Houston (LI) and Minneapolis (LII).