The Internet is slightly atwitter with this news: At next month's meeting of the NFL Competition Committee, the league is going to discuss a new concept for overtime in the playoffs. According to league spokesman Greg Aiello:
Under the new format, both teams would get the ball at least once unless the first team to get the ball scores a touchdown. If the first team to get the ball makes a field goal and the other team ties the game, action would continue until a team scores again.
Remember that the owners would have to approve it with a 2/3 vote, so it's certainly not in place yet. I'd imagine the networks would want some say given the potential for extended overtime games.
I've never been a fan of the NFL's overtime system. While I see some value in the college system, I always thought some kind of compromise between the two would be perfectly fine. This would be a perfectly fine compromise as far as I'm concerned. If you can't stop another team from scoring a touchdown, that's life. But if you hold them to a field goal, you deserve a shot at scoring.
Until now I always thought it would take a Super Bowl being won on the first possession of OT for a change to happen. It's possible that all it took was Brett Favre. My favorite part of the ESPN link above:
The debate about the rules gained steam after the NFC championship game, when New Orleans beat Minnesota 31-28 in overtime and Brett Favre's Vikings never got the ball in the extra period. Under the proposed rule, Minnesota would have gotten another possession because the Vikings didn't allow a touchdown.
I don't know if that was necessarily the impetus for this potential change, but if it's because of Favre, I'd certainly have to laugh. Finally a reason to note dislike him so much (notice I didn't say finally a reason to like him!)