The NFL owners met in Palm Beach, Florida this week (tough life, huh?) and based on their meeting we have come away with five rule changes and one change in the league bylaws.
Overtime- the current rule for overtime in the playoffs will now also be used in the regular season. The new rule is that both teams will be guaranteed a possession in OT unless the first team that wins the coin flip takes it in for a touchdown like Denver did last year against the Steelers. Essentially, this rule is in place just so a team can't win on their first possession of overtime with a field goal. It's a step in the right direction but it still sucks. The Falcons only played in one OT game last year and this rule change would not have affected the outcome of that loss.
Reviewing all turnovers- all (yes all) turnovers will be automatically reviewed by instant replay. Seems a little overkill, no?
Too many men on the field- now a dead ball foul and will result in a five yard penalty.
Kicking the ball- illegal kicking of the ball now results in a loss of down.
Crackback Blocks-this makes it illegal to block defensive players in the head or neck area on a "crackback block".
Thanksgiving and Christmas day will now be considered customary business days for transactions so teams can modify their rosters.
*Several other items were tables until May when the owners will again have the change to vote on them.