Earlier this offseason, the NFL approved a rule change that moved touchbacks from the 20-yard line to the 25-yard line. The NFL is trying to decrease the number of returns by making touchbacks more appealing for returners. However, this move seemed peculiar because kickers may start kicking the ball short of the end-zone with increased hang time to prevent returning teams from starting drives at the 25-yard line.
The new kickoff rule could be a step backwards in the NFL’s quest to make kickoffs safer. The NFL is clear in its intention to make kickoffs safe, and at this point, it seems like eliminating the play is what the NFL is ultimately going to do at some point in the future.