Giving a football tradition the boot

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NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell recently stated that he is considering eliminating the PAT kick (point after touchdown) at some point in the future. Those that want to keep it say that it’s tradition, while others argue that it’s inconsequential and should be changed or eliminated. As a former high-school placekicker and a current pro-football fan, I am not in favor of a complete elimination of all in-game kicking, but I am open to the idea of a change in the difficulty or value of points awarded.

While most may immediately oppose this change, it’s worth looking into some statistics and reasoning behind the idea. According to Goodell, the PAT has become an “automatic.” During the 2013–2014 season only five of the NFL’s 1,267 attempts were missed. Another concern is the potential for injury. There have been too many injuries during PATs for that one point that rarely influences the outcome of the game (at least at the professional level).

To the traditionalist, keep an open mind and give change a chance. It may add some excitement to the game, and not just for regular fans, but for potential fans as well.

Justin Schow
Cardston, Alberta

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