The NFL Rules Committee announced on Wednesday that it will propose a change in kickoffs to the league’s general managers.
The rule changes are designed to limit the number of injuries sustained on kickoffs. Under the proposed rules, the kicking team would kick from their own 25 yard line, rather than the 20; if a touchback occurs, the receiving team will get the ball on the 25 rather than the 20.
If passed, the rule would obviously affect some teams more than others--namely, those with a dynamic kick returner or a strong-legged kicker.
Of course, the Cowboys David Buehler fits into the latter category. Dallas brought Buehler in from USC in 2009 for the express purpose of kicking the ball through the end zone with a good frequency. Buehler has done this well over his first two seasons with Dallas, a period in which he is tied for the league lead in touchbacks.
Under the proposed rule change, Buehler’s brand of powerhouse kicking will matter at least five yards less.
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