Arnold Mann: Safety on the football field

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In football play, on any level, “offensive holding” is one of the most difficult calls for any referee to make. I am not referring to “face mask” or “horse collar” infractions or any such calls beyond the line of scrimmage.

The main job of an offensive lineman is to protect the quarterback, usually the most important and most vulnerable player on the team.

Injury reports over many decades point out that they have, in many instances, failed in that responsibility.

My proposal would initially involve high school and college teams. It could be implemented in a controlled, supervised and documented test run as pointed out below:

Eliminate the call behind the line of scrimmage to allow offensive linemen the ability to grasp an oncoming defensive player’s uniform so as to prevent, as much as possible, his ability to reach the quarterback.

Throwing the oncoming player to the ground would not cause a flag.  The result will be less leg, shoulder and back injuries to important backfield players and a much improved and enjoyable passing game.

I guarantee it!

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