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It wouldn’t be an offseason if the NFL wasn’t debating whether to change a rule that had to do with the outcome of a playoff game. The “Bush Push,” has gotten under plenty of people’s skin during the past 20 years. Back in 2005, Reggie Bush pushed quarterback Matt Leinart into the end zone for a winning touchdown.
During Super Bowl LVII, Jalen Hurts and the Eagles converted seemingly every short-yardage situation with a quarterback sneak. So much so that the league’s competition committed is expected to take a hard look at the play that was so effective this offseason.
Here’s Dean Blandino speaking to The 33rd team about why there might be a potential rule change:
“I think the league is going to look at this, and I’d be shocked if they don’t make a change,’’ said Dean Blandino, a rules analyst for Fox Sports and The 33rd Team, who was the NFL’s vice president of officiating from 2013 to 2017.
The league’s competition committee will meet in two weeks at the league scouting combine in Indianapolis and then again prior to the NFL owners meeting in Phoenix in late March. The Tush Push will be on their agenda. Any rule change recommendations by the committee would be voted on by the owners in Arizona.
“I was talking to (Denver Broncos coach) Sean Payton during Sunday’s game, and he said we’re going to do this every time next season if they don’t take it out,’’ Blandino said.
“It amounts to a rugby scrum. The NFL wants to showcase the athleticism and skill of our athletes. This is just not a skillful play. This is just a tactic that is not an aesthetically pleasing play, and I think the competition committee is going to take a look at it.’’
Blandino compared the Tush Push to a now outlawed tactic teams used on PATs and field goals.
“If you remember on field goals and extra points, they used to be able to push the defensive linemen into the formation,’’ he said. “You would find the weak link on the offensive line. [The offensive line] would have their legs interlocked. And you would get two, and sometimes three, defensive linemen, and two linebackers all pushing into that player. We got rid of that.’’
The competition committee has three options with respect to the Tush Push: 1) recommend no change, which, given the considerable negative sentiment around the league to what the Eagles did this season, isn’t likely; 2) recommend the total outlawing of pushing the ball carrier; and 3) recommend just getting rid of it on sneaks.”
Saying blocking isn’t skillful simply isn’t correct. And if Payton wants to run a quarterback sneak every play, he’ll last as long as Denver’s previous coach.
If you outlaw this version of the quarterback sneak, you’re effectively saying no other sneak has merit. There’s no doubt watching this play can be annoying knowing it’s unstoppable, but outlawing it because it’s not “aesthetically pleasing” is subjective.
Let’s poll a bunch of offensive line and running back coaches to see their opinion. My solution: If you don’t want the opposing offense to convert a sneak on 3rd & 1, allow fewer yards on first and second down.
What do you think? Is this an overreaction? Should the NFL outlaw the quarterback push?
Should the NFL outlaw the QB push?
This poll is closed
Yes, it takes away the fun from the game
No, it’s an overreaction