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(Slate)   Why does the NFL hate field goals? Simple: kickers have become waaaaay too good and somehow the league thinks this is bad   (slate.com) divider line 125
    More: Strange, NFL, Sebastian Janikowski, Nate Kaeding, Rob Bironas, kickers, field goal, David Akers, tie game  
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3884 clicks; posted to Sports » on 13 Sep 2012 at 8:30 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-09-13 08:39:11 AM  
They've got a point. Field goals are 70% indefensible, which in a game-winning situation either leads to a massive anticlimax or howls of laughter if it doesn't come off.

Two Superbowls won solely on field goals don't help.

/yes, I am bitter
 
2012-09-13 08:41:53 AM  

sephjnr: They've got a point. Field goals are 70% indefensible, which in a game-winning situation either leads to a massive anticlimax or howls of laughter if it doesn't come off.

Two Superbowls won solely on field goals don't help.

/yes, I am bitter


Then the opposing defense should stop the opposing offense from getting into field goal position.
 
2012-09-13 08:42:50 AM  

sephjnr: They've got a point. Field goals are 70% indefensible, which in a game-winning situation either leads to a massive anticlimax or howls of laughter if it doesn't come off.

Two Superbowls won solely on field goals don't help.

/yes, I am bitter


So what? If a team can put themselves in a postion to win by a field goal, what's wrong with that?
 
2012-09-13 08:44:25 AM  
If the NFL hate FGs so much, to conclude, force punters to score 1pt-punt kicks from between 7 to 40 yards instead. It would encourage longer FG attempts and better 4th-down drives.
 
2012-09-13 08:45:05 AM  
I like field goals. Just another part of the game. I like safeties even more. It's 2 points...for the defense! And it's funny watching a player celebrate by doing the safety dance. Even better when he takes off his helmet to do it.
 
2012-09-13 08:45:34 AM  
As kickers have improved, the NFL has tried to make their job harder: in 1974, moving the goalposts to the rear of the end zone

Yes, the only reason for this change was that the NFL hates kickers. Sure.
 
2012-09-13 08:53:39 AM  
The NFL doesn't hate field goals half as much as it hates kickoff returns.
 
2012-09-13 08:53:40 AM  

Sargun: Then the opposing defense should stop the opposing offense from getting into field goal position.


You think that's a realistic proposition if a field goal can reliably be kicked from mid-field?
 
2012-09-13 09:00:07 AM  
Field goals should be eliminated from the game, period. If you can't score a touchdown, turn it over on downs to the opposing team. I only say this because I despise the Patriots, and all 3 of their SB wins were by field goals, and that was with cheating by their head coach.

/yes, I too, am bitter.
 
2012-09-13 09:00:10 AM  

Misplaced yat: As kickers have improved, the NFL has tried to make their job harder: in 1974, moving the goalposts to the rear of the end zone

Yes, the only reason for this change was that the NFL hates kickers. Sure.


img207.imageshack.us

In 1974, the uprights were right on the goal line
But some of the players were running into them
And getting hurt
So screw the kicker
Who cares about the kicker?
 
2012-09-13 09:04:51 AM  
A lot of fans will say football is exciting and baseball is boring and not see the connection between a 28-21 football game and 4-3 baseball score. Without field goals, football is basically another low-scoring game with a silly score multiplier. Yes yes yes there are extra points, 2-point conversions and safeties but the first is almost always automatic, the second is almost exclusively used to account for field goals and the last is never part of a winning strategy. They do make the game more varied, but not even a one-score Super Bowl in a blinding snowstorm can get people nervous about a PAT.

The field goal itself isn't a particularly exciting way to score, but its existence dramatically influences the game. It makes football a sport unlike any other. Because it makes so much sense, and makes football a special strategic sport, I predict it will be eliminated to "make the game more exciting for casual fans" by 2017.
 
2012-09-13 09:10:10 AM  
Keep the field goals, eliminate punts.
 
2012-09-13 09:11:10 AM  
I've scanned this article twice now and I keep missing the part about what the NFL is doing to discourage 70+ yd FG, that example looked really long, I imagine it's in there somewhere. Would anyone care to summarize for me? Much obliged.
 
2012-09-13 09:12:02 AM  
They should make extra points more exciting by either
a) making teams go for 2 or
b) making the kickers kick it from the angle where the ball crossed the goal line (like rugby). So if a guy dives into the endzone at the pylon, the kicker can move the ball back as far as he wants but he has to kick it from the sideline essentially.

As for field goals if coaches looked at win probability statistics they would kick field goals a lot less often, which would make the game more exciting. But because conventional wisdom says "kick a FG" it's better for their job security to not try and innovate in the the kicking game.

/Don't get me started on punting.
 
2012-09-13 09:13:05 AM  
Actually, they just just make football rugby.
 
2012-09-13 09:15:03 AM  
I used to play in a fantasy league that awarded bonus points for field goals of 40+ yards and 50+ yards. A good kicker could save your ass in a league like that.
 
2012-09-13 09:16:10 AM  

InfrasonicTom: Keep the field goals, eliminate punts.


Never thought about it but I kinda like that idea.
 
2012-09-13 09:19:01 AM  

ghall3: b) making the kickers kick it from the angle where the ball crossed the goal line (like rugby). So if a guy dives into the endzone at the pylon, the kicker can move the ball back as far as he wants but he has to kick it from the sideline essentially.


This is what I would like.
 
2012-09-13 09:20:37 AM  
Eliminating FG's would drastically change the "normal" offensive strategy of the game though. You might think that no FG's would encourage teams to open up the offense, but it would actually do the exact opposite. FG's are an "easy" way to essentially get ~50% of a TD, without needing to go the entire length of the field to score. They're actually incredibly valuable at any point in the game, which is why coaches fall in love with them. Without FG's, points become much more precious, because they are harder to come by. The number of punts would skyrocket; you'd see coaches asking their punters to coffin kick from the opponents 30 yard line, just to pin the other team and hopefully get better field position. We'd see a return of conservative, ball-control offenses, because turnovers, even at ~midfield, would be much more costly.
 
2012-09-13 09:21:39 AM  
You know what sport essentially is football with no punts and very rare field goals? Arena football.
 
2012-09-13 09:24:56 AM  
I would actually encourage more FGs if I were in charge, by making 50+ yard FGs worth 4 and 60+ yard FGs worth 5. 70+ can be worth 7. F*ck it, if you want to try that sh*t, go for it.

/especially since you're more likely to get it blocked and taken back for a TD than you are to make it at that distance
//60+ starts the opponent on your side of the field if you miss, it should be worth more
///20-yard and in FGs worth 2
 
2012-09-13 09:25:42 AM  
Just make the uprights narrower. Possibly much much narrower. If we could make field goals over 50 yards into a 30%-40% success rate, teams would go for it on 4th down more often.
 
2012-09-13 09:27:41 AM  

ghall3: They should make extra points more exciting


The purpose of the PAT isn't to make the game exciting. It makes the rest of the game more exciting by making one TD > 2 FGs.

ghall3: As for field goals if coaches looked at win probability statistics they would kick field goals a lot less often, which would make the game more exciting.


I've seen enough teams win without ever reaching the end zone to justify kicking FGs. You can look at the raw odds but some schemes just don't work well in the red zone. On the other hand, teams punt waaaaaayyy too much. Never saw the wisdom in paying a free down to give yourself a 100% chance of NOT scoring just to slightly reduce the other team's chance of scoring.
 
2012-09-13 09:34:48 AM  

dragonchild: The purpose of the PAT isn't to make the game exciting. It makes the rest of the game more exciting by making one TD > 2 FGs.


Then just save us all the time and make a TD worth 7. Oh right...that would cut into commercials...

dragonchild: I've seen enough teams win without ever reaching the end zone to justify kicking FGs. You can look at the raw odds but some schemes just don't work well in the red zone. On the other hand, teams punt waaaaaayyy too much. Never saw the wisdom in paying a free down to give yourself a 100% chance of NOT scoring just to slightly reduce the other team's chance of scoring.


I agree that FGs are worth it in many situations. However, teams that routinely kick field goals with the line of scrimmage inside the 5 aren't really helping their chances to win. Especially when they do it down by 2 or 3 scores. Yes you may be pulling one score closer, however you need a lot of points, it's easier to get into position to kick another FG than it is to get inside the 5 to score a TD.

Also teams that kick long field goals when it is 4th and less than 4 or so. What is the conversion % on field goals 45+ yards vs 4th and 4? I'm betting it's better or equal to go for it.
 
2012-09-13 09:35:34 AM  

kronicfeld: Sargun: Then the opposing defense should stop the opposing offense from getting into field goal position.

You think that's a realistic proposition if a field goal can reliably be kicked from mid-field?


Yep, real reliable: Link
 
2012-09-13 09:36:22 AM  

RminusQ: This is what I would like.


I want to see the offensive and defensive formations where the snap is coming from basically the sideline.
 
2012-09-13 09:36:23 AM  

IAmRight: I would actually encourage more FGs if I were in charge, by making 50+ yard FGs worth 4 and 60+ yard FGs worth 5. 70+ can be worth 7. F*ck it, if you want to try that sh*t, go for it.

/especially since you're more likely to get it blocked and taken back for a TD than you are to make it at that distance
//60+ starts the opponent on your side of the field if you miss, it should be worth more
///20-yard and in FGs worth 2


Yeah, pretty much. 20-29 yards: 2 points, 30-39: 3 points, 40-49: 4 points, etc. That way, field goals would never always be 7-yard snaps. If you're down 5 and at the 28-yard line, make the snapper snap it 12-yards. Also, put another crossbar at the top of the goal posts so the ball has to go through the rectangle and not just between the uprights at an infinite height.
 
2012-09-13 09:39:12 AM  

Cubs300: I like field goals. Just another part of the game. I like safeties even more. It's 2 points...for the defense! And it's funny watching a player celebrate by doing the safety dance. Even better when he takes off his helmet to do it.


Well said, couldn't agree more
collectingtokens.files.wordpress.com
 
2012-09-13 09:40:36 AM  

Ponzholio: Yeah, pretty much. 20-29 yards: 2 points, 30-39: 3 points, 40-49: 4 points, etc. That way, field goals would never always be 7-yard snaps. If you're down 5 and at the 28-yard line, make the snapper snap it 12-yards. Also, put another crossbar at the top of the goal posts so the ball has to go through the rectangle and not just between the uprights at an infinite height.


The problem with that is then teams with kickers who make 85% of their field goals might start just playing for lots of FGs plus, what if a team is down 4 and is on the 10 with time running out? Do they go for the TD or intentionally lose yards to set up for the tie?

I do like the rectangle idea though.
 
2012-09-13 09:40:57 AM  
I also propose that, should a kick-off split the uprights, the kicking team should be awarded a single point.
 
2012-09-13 09:44:14 AM  
Does anyone really hate field goals? They help balance the game and provide more variety. As well as heart stopping moments that remind me a little of the agony of a soccer penalty shootout.

Get rid of field goals and you're (mostly) getting rid of two point conversions, teams losing on a chip shot, and most importantly of all, this:

cdn.c.photoshelter.com

Oh and Penn State losing last week too.
 
2012-09-13 09:44:14 AM  
But if you get rid of field goals, it would make selling super bowl boxes much harder.

Can't anyone think of the illegal gambler anymore???
 
2012-09-13 09:44:30 AM  

Ponzholio: Yeah, pretty much. 20-29 yards: 2 points, 30-39: 3 points, 40-49: 4 points, etc. That way, field goals would never always be 7-yard snaps.


Kickers are pretty good percentage-wise from 40-49, which is why I'd wait until it's over 50 to add the fourth point.
 
2012-09-13 09:46:13 AM  
This is Jason Hanson's fault. The greatest kicker of all time.
 
2012-09-13 09:51:07 AM  
I've long suggested that field goals beyond 50 yards should be worth 4 points and field goals inside of 30 should be worth 2.
 
2012-09-13 09:51:46 AM  

ghall3: dragonchild: The purpose of the PAT isn't to make the game exciting. It makes the rest of the game more exciting by making one TD > 2 FGs.

Then just save us all the time and make a TD worth 7. Oh right...that would cut into commercials...


It would also eliminate the possibility of a 2-point conversion, which is kind of the point behind the XP anyway. Play it safe, and get 1, or run a football play, and get 2? What's your call?
 
2012-09-13 09:53:46 AM  

dragonchild: A lot of fans will say football is exciting and baseball is boring and not see the connection between a 28-21 football game and 4-3 baseball score. Without field goals, football is basically another low-scoring game with a silly score multiplier. Yes yes yes there are extra points, 2-point conversions and safeties but the first is almost always automatic, the second is almost exclusively used to account for field goals and the last is never part of a winning strategy. They do make the game more varied, but not even a one-score Super Bowl in a blinding snowstorm can get people nervous about a PAT.

The field goal itself isn't a particularly exciting way to score, but its existence dramatically influences the game. It makes football a sport unlike any other. Because it makes so much sense, and makes football a special strategic sport, I predict it will be eliminated to "make the game more exciting for casual fans" by 2017.


it's not exciting. It's lazy, cheap, anticlimactic and frustrating. Depending purely on where the ball is spotted people either get nervous (if its' 40+ yards out) or either jubliant or completely despondent.

Punts are far less predictable.
 
2012-09-13 09:55:46 AM  

Gonz: It would also eliminate the possibility of a 2-point conversion, which is kind of the point behind the XP anyway. Play it safe, and get 1, or run a football play, and get 2? What's your call?


Ok, TD worth 6. Option for the 7th point or go for 2. If you take the one, just move on to the kickoff. (I'm still working out the details).

Personally I still like my original idea of changing the angle.
 
2012-09-13 09:56:07 AM  

dragonchild: They do make the game more varied, but not even a one-score Super Bowl in a blinding snowstorm can get people nervous about a PAT.


There was a game either last year or the year before where a team scored a TD with like no time remaining but had the PAT blocked, and then lost instead of going to OT.

I don't mind FGs or PATs. They give the game an added dimension that you don't see in other sports.
 
2012-09-13 09:57:24 AM  

bacongood: kronicfeld: Sargun: Then the opposing defense should stop the opposing offense from getting into field goal position.

You think that's a realistic proposition if a field goal can reliably be kicked from mid-field?

Yep, real reliable: Link


That's awesome... the first second of "o hai guyze, I caught this, let's go get some gatorade n' shi" ***ENGAGE AFTERBURNERS*** "lol j/k. U MAD giants?".
 
2012-09-13 10:02:58 AM  

ghall3: Personally I still like my original idea of changing the angle.


Well you can't have guys lining up off the field and the center can't be at the end of the line. Plus the holder would be out of bounds on sidelines kicks, and therefore the ball would be out of bounds.

/now I'm wondering what the distribution "where the ball crosses the goal line on TDs" graphic would look like.
 
2012-09-13 10:03:26 AM  
Changes I would make..

4 points for 50+ FGs
Move the extra point kick back to the 10 yard line or farther, make teams consider going for 2 much more often.
 
2012-09-13 10:07:33 AM  

IAmRight: Well you can't have guys lining up off the field and the center can't be at the end of the line. Plus the holder would be out of bounds on sidelines kicks, and therefore the ball would be out of bounds.

/now I'm wondering what the distribution "where the ball crosses the goal line on TDs" graphic would look like.


It would be uncontested and on a tee....
 
2012-09-13 10:11:59 AM  
This means that great kicker salaries should go up. Face it. There aren't that many great ones who consistently hit the 45+ yarder. Your offense worked it to the 28, let them have a chance at 3 points.

Akers' FG last week was the most impressive thing last sunday, and I say that as a pack fan.
 
2012-09-13 10:14:03 AM  

ghall3: It would be uncontested and on a tee....


I'd rather see the current PAT setup than one guy on the field setting up for his own moment.
 
2012-09-13 10:14:48 AM  

Jubeebee: dragonchild: They do make the game more varied, but not even a one-score Super Bowl in a blinding snowstorm can get people nervous about a PAT.

There was a game either last year or the year before where a team scored a TD with like no time remaining but had the PAT blocked, and then lost instead of going to OT.


Or this could happen... :(


LemonYellowSun: Move the extra point kick back to the 10 yard line or farther, make teams consider going for 2 much more often.


You would have to move it back much, much farther to make teams reconsider kicking. That's not even a 30 yarder.

To make teams go for 2 more often, move the ball closer to the goal line.
 
2012-09-13 10:16:43 AM  

IAmRight: ghall3: Personally I still like my original idea of changing the angle.

Well you can't have guys lining up off the field and the center can't be at the end of the line. Plus the holder would be out of bounds on sidelines kicks, and therefore the ball would be out of bounds.


Actually, Play-It-Where-It-Lands sounds awesome. Only use the field hashes as a point of reference (the Refs can tell where to spot it) and make formations fit accordingly.
 
2012-09-13 10:17:37 AM  

Misplaced yat: To make teams go for 2 more often, move the ball closer to the goal line.


Frankly, making teams go for 2 more often is stupid. Then you're basically having the game come down to "who is the best at 2-point conversions?"
 
2012-09-13 10:18:17 AM  

IAmRight: I'd rather see the current PAT setup than one guy on the field setting up for his own moment.


At least the PAT would have some challenge to it rather then having to watch them convert 99% of the time as a league with more than 2/3rds of teams at 100%. That's not just last year, that's for the last decade.
 
2012-09-13 10:19:54 AM  

ghall3: At least the PAT would have some challenge to it rather then having to watch them convert 99% of the time as a league with more than 2/3rds of teams at 100%. That's not just last year, that's for the last decade.


I don't need PATs to have a random difficulty challenge that serves no purpose. Assuming percentages go down based on the angle, you're basically making it so TDs scored on the edges count for less than TDs scored up the middle.
 
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