The NFL is taking measures to protect its players.
The NFL wrote in a new helmet rule this offseason which is supposed to protect players from concussion-like symptoms. The new rule states that players can no longer lower their head (or helmet) when initiating contact with a member of the opposition. Because the rule dictatorial and somewhat hard to "ingrain" given the fluid motion of the game, players and coaches were quick to question its application. After careful review, the league has decided it will not alter the rule change and the players will essentially be asked to learn-on-the-go, sometimes at the cost of a perilous penalty flag.
The NFL's executive vice president of football operations, and former Philadelphia Eagle Troy Vincent issued a statement today, putting a freeze on any potential alterations going into next season. His statement goes to mention a leaguewide consultation that took place between the NFL's executive branch, coaches, players and officials.
The rule officially states: "It is a foul if a player lowers his head to initiate and make contact with his helmet against an opponent," wording that confused the better part of the NFL community before documents were passed during mini and training camps. Players falling on the wrong side of this rule can be penalized with a game misconduct, and only under those conditions can a play be reviewed by camera footage.