NFL Rumors: Roger Goodell makes stance clear on banning Eagles' ‘tush push’ play
Roger Goodell has seen the Philadelphia Eagles use the 'tush push' to great effect over the last couple of years as they have reached the Super Bowl and look good to make a deep postseason run next year.
He has seen multiple opposition coaches try to stop the play and fail, effectively giving the Eagles just nine yards to cover in every first down. Now as per the latest reporting by "The Athletic", the NFL commissioner has decided that he will get involved to put a stop to the play once and for all.
Where other coaches have failed, Roger Goodell wants to get involved and ban the play so that he can artificially level the playing field.
Of course, he alone cannot stop it from happening. That can only happen with a majority vote from all the NFL teams. But knowing that the commissioner has a particular viewpoint can only be good for those who have tried but not succeeded in stopping the Eagles on the field. His viewpoint is quoted as follows:
"Though it will all come down to the voting, the most important opinion about the play may come from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. I was told by a league source that Goodell wants to see this play removed from the game permanently."
Is Roger Goodell wrong to insert himself in trying to stop the 'tush push' by the Philadelphia Eagles?
Roger Goodell's alleged wish might be borne out of a need to stop this play because it has become a nearly-unstoppable force. He might feel that it makes the playing field uneven. There are examples of external forces stopping dominant playstyles in other contact sports.
For example, St. George Dragons, the all conquering rugby-league club of Australia, won 11 consecutive championships from 1956 to 1966 by mastering unlimited tackle rugby. Their demise only came about after rules were introduced to limit the amount of tackles (similar to downs over a field length), showcasing how outside influences could change results on the field.
On the other hand, the 'tush push' could be seen as an analog to the maul in a rugby union. Many opposition players struggle to stop it because the front row protects the ball carrier behind them and it is a struggle to stop their rolling momentum. But instead of banning it, opposing coaches are tasked with becoming innovative and stopping it.
The Philadelphia Eagles could argue that the 'tush push' is not unfair as they have developed a play with good coaching and players. The way to stop them should be even better coaching and not Roger Goodell.