The extra point just got a little harder

Posted by Darren Urban on May 19, 2015 – 3:54 pm

As expected, the NFL owners voted in a change for the extra point today during their league meetings. In an effort to put a little more excitement into a play that had become all but automatic at 99-plus percent, extra point kicks must now be tried from the 15-yard line instead of the 1 — in other words, a 33-yard kick instead of one from 19 yards. The ball will remained placed on the 2-yard line if a team wants to try a two-point conversion.

And now, defensive teams can return a blocked extra point kick, or a fumbled or intercepted two-point try, and score two points of their own with a length-of-the-field runback — just like the college rule.

Cardinals coach Bruce Arians had said earlier in the day he was hoping the two-point try would be moved to the 1.5-yard line, to really make the decision tougher. Over the last 10 seasons, the Cardinals have tried 45 field goals between 30 and 33 yards, making 44 of them. Current kicker Chandler Catanzaro was 7-for-7  from that distance last season.  (The only miss in the last decade? Neil Rackers from 32 yards in overtime in a 2007 home game against the 49ers. You know the one with the Hail Larry and Patrick Willis somehow chasing Sean Morey down from behind before Rackers’ miss. That game didn’t end well.)

There might be other factors as well in this new rule, as pointed out by former Cardinals kicker Jay Feely:


The NFL figures the new kick conversion rate will be around 95 percent. It’ll be interesting to see how many coaches risk going for two more often. The guess is that total won’t appreciably jump.


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Posted in Blog | 17 Comments »

17 Responses to “The extra point just got a little harder”

  1. By Irwineyes on May 19, 2015 | Reply

    The NFL should kick it off with deflating the footballs and see how many extra points can be attained.

  2. By sbrown on May 19, 2015 | Reply

    CatMan can start tomorrow on the longer extra point kicks. Don’t know if I like this, half to see how it works in the preseason games.
    I do think that is better than bringing in the goal posts, like they tried for the Pro Bowl, that was like watching Arena Football FG’s / PAT’s.

  3. By Whitey on May 19, 2015 | Reply

    I like this change. It’d be great if the Cards special teams can block a few since they are the best in the NFL at that. I think Jay Feely’s comment about injuries is stupid. Why should they have a meaningless play where players only half-heartedly try.

    Why not add a little more drama to the games. Shows how smart the NFL is vs. other sports that are so caught up in history and tradition that they aren’t willing to try new things in an effort to improve the game.

  4. By jwoodaz on May 19, 2015 | Reply

    If they’ere going to do this then why not let them kick from 55 yards out for three points if they dare..?

  5. By Black on May 19, 2015 | Reply

    It’s a stupid rule. What about us traditional football fans? This isn’t x box it’s the nfl.

  6. By jeffy1951 on May 20, 2015 | Reply

    @Whitey – what are you talking about? Baseball has gone to the designated hitter and video challenges, basketball has gone to the 3 point shot , hockey to the shoot-out – ALL major changes that increased fan interest (and controversy) and football is adopting changes in an attempt to improve the product. I say hip hip hooray!!

  7. By Eazy E on May 20, 2015 | Reply

    I don’t mind the changes. They seem kind of inevitable for a couple years now. More teams should go for 2 anyway like Belichick has been saying. It is nice that the defense gets a bone FINALLY and I’m a offensive type of guy!

  8. By Fred on May 20, 2015 | Reply

    Darren thinking about kicking I was wondering about the punter, is Dave coming back from his injury , will there be someone that the cards bring in to compete for the starting job

  9. By Darren Urban on May 20, 2015 | Reply

    Fred —

    RE: Punters

    Drew Butler remains to battle Zastudil.

  10. By averant on May 20, 2015 | Reply

    Why not do something more practical, instead? Make a rule that you can no longer down the ball the last two minutes of the game. Make every play count and fight for every precious second in the 4th and OT. That will put asses in seats and make the game more exciting. I am so sick of watching games in with QBs kneeling over and over again to end the game. It’s anticlimactic and honetly makes me turn off the game before it ends.

  11. By Ottis Anderson Fan on May 20, 2015 | Reply

    Jay who?

  12. By much.faster on May 20, 2015 | Reply

    four TEs? only if he count thomas for one, lol ….

  13. By drprozzak on May 21, 2015 | Reply

    I like the change. Feely among others also argued the change was needless as success rate at 33 yards was 90%, down from 99% at the old distance of 19 yards.

    He also stated in a radio interview that people want to see the game go into overtime over a boring kick.
    I can only speak for myself, but unless it’s my team playing catch up, I don’t care about OT, I want to see last second heroics. Defenses being able to return a blocked PAT is huge.

    Lastly, Jay argued that defenses will now, “bring it” and rush hard on those extra point kicks, which will lead to injuries, yet didn’t convey the same concern for safety when instead those teams go to overtime.

  14. By BirdsSTC on May 21, 2015 | Reply


    Excitement and getting “asses” in the seats isn’t exactly a problem for the NFL as it stands now.

  15. By Scott H on May 21, 2015 | Reply

    BirdsSTC –

    Now, THAT was well said. Right on, brother. The extra point did not need to be changed for EXACTLY those reasons. NFL games are almost ALWAYS exciting and the “drama” is built in. It’s the nature of the game. This isn’t major league baseball, which can often be like watching paint dry. I swear, I turned on the radio the other day to a Phillies game broadcast and – I kid you not – it must have been close to 30 seconds before an announcer said anything! That can happen in baseball. NFL football???? NO FRIGGIN WAY!

    The game is NOT being made any better or more exciting by making the extra point a longer kick. It accomplishes about as much as making kick-offs 5 yards longer did a few years ago. Basically nothing. So? Why change it?

    Yeah, extra points are pretty automatic. Yeah, they don’t involve a lot of drama. And….so what? People aren’t planning their Sundays around NFL football so they can watch the extra points. They plan their Sundays around NFL football so they can watch EVERYTHING else! The extra point is just something that happens while you’re going around the room high-fiving all your buddies, or while you’re grabbing another beer, or while you run to the bathroom to make room for another beer! It’s comforting, actually. It’s been a part of the game forever and it’s one of those things that should just never change.

    Christ almighty, if they want to change something that TRULY needs to be changed, I would suggest the Pro Bowl. That oughta keep them busy for awhile!

  16. By Bob Turpin on May 23, 2015 | Reply

    I love the change in extra point try. Kickers are going to be more valuable than ever. The rules are always evolving. Players have to keep up even if it doesn’t suit them. Let’s go Red Birds looking forward to seeing you give the rest of the league a run for their money

  17. By Scott H on May 25, 2015 | Reply

    I chuckle as I say this….wonder how long it will take the people saying this is a good change to do a complete 180 when their team loses a game because of a missed extra point.

    I am expecting that will happen more often going forward. Is that the kind of “drama” we want? Again, it’s no big thing until it happens to YOUR team.

    Touchdowns can be hard to score. And extra points – automatic or not – DO matter in terms of the score and / or the outcome of a game. Maybe it’s just me but – in terms of the Cardinals, the team I care about – I always kinda looked at extra points as a “reward” for the execution that resulted in the TD they just scored. During a close game, maybe a late season game that could be the difference between the playoffs or not, maybe on the road, maybe in a cold-weather city…..maybe I just don’t want to have to worry so much about the damn point after!

    Like I said, at some point….this will cost us a game. Live by the sword, die by the sword.

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