NFL overtime rules lack equal opportunity for teams

by: NICOLE TRUGILLO/Editor-in-Chief

Losing a regular football game is tolerable. But losing a playoff game is devastating.

As many people have seen or have heard, the Green Bay Packers had a devastating loss to the Arizona Cardinals on Jan. 16 in overtime of the NFL playoffs. It wouldn’t have been devastating if the Packers didn’t play an amazing game.

I’m not writing this opinion to gloat about the Packers, or even bash them, because they played an amazing game.

I don’t have a problem with the Packers losing (kind of). I have a problem with how they lost.

For the people who didn’t watch the game, let me recap for you.

Quarterback Aaron Rodgers from the Green Bay Packers threw a 41-yard pass to Jeff Janis in the endzone to tie the game with no time left on the clock in the fourth quarter. Kicker Mason Crobsy, booted the extra point to continue the game into overtime.

As a Packer fan, one can only imagine how exciting and heart-stopping the game was to me…until my heart was crushed in overtime.

The referee flipped the coin and the Cardinals received the ball first. But, the referee failed to mention that whomever scores first wins.

It only took one throw from quarterback Carson Palmer to Larry Fitzgerald to basically end the game. Palmer threw it to Fitzgerald and he gained 75 yards and the game ended when Palmer threw a shovel pass to Fitzgerald resulting in a touchdown and winning the game.

It took one minute, one touchdown, and only one possession for the game to be over, not even letting the Packers get a chance to redeem themselves.

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Speaking for all teams, and not just mine, the overtime rules in the NFL are ridiculous and honestly not far. ‘Life isn’t fair, Nicole.’ But you sure can try to make it fair. College football overtime rules are not like the NFL. In college, both teams get possession of the ball, and that’s how it should be. At the end, it all comes down to skill.

In the professional league, it all comes down to who will get the ball first, which is luck. The referee flips the coin, and if the team you’re rooting for doesn’t get the ball, then basically it’s all over.

That is why I’m upset. I’m upset because the NFL overtime rules are unfair. They should let both teams have possession of the ball. It shouldn’t be whoever scores a touchdown first, because where is the skill in that? The Cardinals basically won from a coin toss, and I’m not afraid to say that.

People can say I’m bitter. People can say I’m only writing this because the Packers lost, and maybe I am. But I’m also stating facts.

Why can’t NFL overtime rules be the same as college football? Isn’t the college league preparing guys for the professional league (if they choose to make it a career)?

Bottom line, both teams should have get a chance to possess the ball, especially if it’s a playoff game. Even if it’s a regular-season game, the overtime rules should be switched.

The Packers could have scored if they had a possession. Actually, I know they could have scored, based on how well the Packers were playing. But, I, and all the other Packers fans, will never know…unfortunately.

 

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