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NFL Approves Three Rule Changes For 2024

NFL teams adopted three rule changes for the 2024 season on Monday at the NFL Annual Meeting.


The tackle that briefly knocked Geno Smith out of the Seahawks' Week 4 win over the Giants didn't draw a flag at the time, but next season that type of play, known as a swivel hip-drop tackle, will be illegal.

That was one of three rule changes adopted by NFL clubs on Monday at the Annual League Meeting in Orlando, a change aimed at eliminating the type of lower-leg injuries that often result from such tackles. Illegal hip-drop tackles will result in a 15-yard penalty and automatic first down.

The change does not outlaw all hip-drop tackles, but rather those on which the tackler "unweights himself by swiveling and dropping his hips and/or lower body, landing on and trapping the runner's leg(s) at or below the knee." In other words, if a hip-drop tackle doesn't include landing on the player's legs, it is still legal.

Also approved is a change to the rules for coaches' challenges, with teams now awarded a third challenge if they win either of their first two challenges. Previously, a third challenge was only given if a team won both of its challenges.

The other change approved addresses situations in which fouls are committed by both teams on a play that results in a change of possession, allowing for enforcement of a major foul (unnecessary roughness) by the offense prior to a change of possession. Previously, major fouls committed by the offense in that situation were ignored.

The proposed change that would significantly change kickoffs was not voted on Monday.

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