We learned last week that the NFL’s All-Time Leading Rusher, Emmitt Smith, is no great fan of a proposed rule change that would make it illegal for ball-carriers to initiate contact with defenders by lowering their head and leading with the crown of their helmets.
Smith believes the rule would leave running backs exposed, and that the very proposal of such a change to the rulebook means that some in the NFL offices have lost their minds.
Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett won’t go as far as Smith in his criticism of the rule change, which will need 24 of 32 votes this week at the Owners Meetings in order to pass, and he actually believes the league’s heart is in the right place. But he does have a criticism: namely, that the rule would be pretty much impossible to officiate.
"We all understand the challenges that it puts the officials in," Garrett said, per ESPN Dallas. "A lot of the defenseless player calls they’ve had to make over the last couple years are hard calls. The game happens fast, and they’ve got to be bang, 'he hit him with his head first, it wasn’t his shoulder.' Players duck. All the things that go into making those snap judgments, they’re difficult, and I think that’s the real concern that the coaches might have is simply that. It’s a hard rule to officiate, and far be it from us to say we understand what an official’s going through, but the game does happen fast, those collisions happen quickly. I think it’s well-intended."
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