NFL competition committee won’t recommend rule change on fumbling through end zone

Contributing Writer

There will be no rule change for the 2024 NFL season when it comes to fumbling through the end zone and possession going to the defense.

Dallas Cowboys executive vice president and NFL competition committee member Stephen Jones said Tuesday that discussion on changing that rule “died.” This seemed inevitable as NFL Media’s Judy Battista reported Monday that the topic was talked about, but the feeling was that it’s a rare occurrence and ballcarriers should be more protective of the ball as they are going in for a score.

One of the notable times it happened this season came in the AFC divisional playoff round when Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Mecole Hardman fumbled just short of the goal line and the Buffalo Bills were awarded possession as the ball went through the end zone.

Justin Jefferson of the Minnesota Vikings also experienced this during a six-point loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 2.

One reason for the lack of movement on the issue, according to CBS Sports’ Jonathan Jones, is that an alternative decision has yet to be proposed. If the fumbling should not result in a loss of possession, then what should happen? That question has never been answered, thus the lack of traction on the topic.

How rare does this play happen? The 2022 season did not see one end-zone-fumble-to-touchback play, and there was only one instance during the 2021 season.

Any change would need three-fourths of NFL teams to vote for it, so 24 out of 32, and if there’s no momentum to even hold a deep discussion about it, the rule seems like it will be here to stay for a while.

Read original Yahoo Sports article.