New NFL Overtime Rules

NFL fans across the country have been causing chaos on the internet and fighting for a change to the league’s overtime rules. 

The movement started when the Buffalo Bill’s 2021 season came to an end due to the previous rules. Many fans were upset about the unfair situation that the Bills were put in, while others may disagree.

The AFC divisional round in the playoffs consisted of a matchup between the Buffalo Bills and the Kansas City Chiefs. The score was tied up at the end of the fourth quarter, meaning the teams would have to go into overtime to conclude which team would win the game.

Overtime in the NFL starts with the referee flipping a coin and one team choosing heads or tails in order to receive the ball and play offense first. In this case, the Chiefs won the coin toss, and on their first drive in overtime were able to score and defeat the Bills.

Tyrann Mathieu and Josh Allen watch as the referee flips a coin to enter overtime. Photo Credit: James P. McCoy.

Despite how hard the Bills’ offense fought throughout the game, their defeat revolved around the fact that the team’s defense was not able to stop the Chiefs. This caused a lot of fans to take the situation into their own hands and fight for some sort of change within the overtime rules.

On March 29th, the NFL finally listened to the noise that the fans made. There would be an impactful change made to the previous possession rules in overtime to eliminate unjust losses in the NFL.

The new set of rules that were created by NFL owners includes both teams having mandatory possession of the ball in overtime, meaning both teams’ offenses will get a shot to score rather than only one of them.

Although the rule only applies to the playoffs, fans are still content with the change. Many believed that overtime victories overall came down to a coin toss, but with the change that was made, both teams have a fair chance of winning a game when it matters.