A Game Can Tie?

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Friday, November 4, 2016

This past weekend in London, Washington and Cincinnati played to a 27-27 tie, already the second tie of this NFL season. One game ending in a tie is rare for an NFL season; two is extremely rare in modern football. For comparison, last Sunday’s game was only the seventh tie since the turn of the century. Whenever there is a tie during the NFL season, there are usually a couple reactions. The first is disbelief that there can be a tie in the NFL.  The fact that some NFL players and coaches do not know this rule still boggles my mind.

The second reaction is usually a call to change the rules so that teams can never tie. The NFL, in my opinion, made a good decision when it required the team winning the coin toss to score a touchdown (as opposed to any score) in order to win the game. I wish they would tweak the rule a bit more, and at least give each team the opportunity to have an offensive possession. If the opening possession results in a touchdown, the opposing team should still have the opportunity to score a touchdown.

I am still in favor of ending the game after a 15 minute time overtime if that game is still tied. Asking the players to continue to play additional time simply increases the risk for injury, especially considering players are already fatigued from playing a full game. So during the regular season, just accept that games can end in a tie, because it does not have to be accepted it that often.

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