Dez (Really) Caught It! NFL Owners Vote to Simply Catch Rule
Take a deep exhalation everyone because NFL owners unanimously voted to simplify the language on what constitutes a catch. Gathered at the Annual League Meeting in Orlando, all 32 teams passed a new catch rule that kinda sorta makes actual sense.
Under the new language a catch is defined as:
1. Control of the ball.
2. Two feet down or another body part.
3. A football move such as:
– A third step;
– Reaching/extending for the line-to-gain
– Or the ability to perform such an act.
The key aspect of the new and improved rule eliminates the need to maintain control throughout the entire process of going to the ground.
Had the new rule been in effect four years ago, Dez Bryant would have caught the likely game-winning touchdown in the 2014 divisional game against the Packers A plethora of subsequent non-catches would have been ruled complete and in some cases, altered the course of NFL history.
As with most NFL rules, the new catch rule will still be fraught with issues and ambiguity, especially regarding what constitutes a football move.
Last season, we at TFG advocated for simply making a catch an eye test for officials. Catches would be non-reviewable, much in the vein of pass interference. There would be some human error but there might be more consistency and much less time wasted on reply.
For now, the new catch language is a huge improvement over the mocked version NFL fans and teams had been subjected to for far too long.
Better later than never, right Dez?