Blog Entry

Bears kicked off at the 30-yard-line: Why?

Posted on: August 13, 2011 9:51 pm
Edited on: August 13, 2011 10:09 pm
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Posted by Will Brinson

You've certainly heard about the NFL's new rule on kickoffs: they're happening from the 35-yard-line now. Not the 30.

Maybe the Chicago Bears missed the memo?

Because they spent their first preseason game on Saturday night (as you can see from the photo to your right) kicking off from the 30-yard-line.

Per Jeff Dickerson of ESPN Chicago, the press box official at Soldier Field has been screaming at the Bears -- "They cannot kickoff from the 30!" -- in vain. (It's very far away from the field, as you might guess.)

For whatever reason, Chicago's simply refusing to kick from the 35-yard-line.

"The team is simply evaluating our kickoff coverage unit," a Bears spokesman told CBSSports.com.

So then it's not anything to do with the fac that three teams truly got hosed by the NFL's decision to change things up: the Bears, the Seahawks and the Browns. The latter two recently extended return specialists (Leon Washington and Josh Cribbs, respectively) and the Bears rely on Devin Hester to be a gamechanger on special teams.

That's good. Although Mike Pereira, former VP of Officiating at the NFL, tweeted that "Carl Johnson called and put a stop to it." So clearly someone at the NFL wasn't too thrilled that the Bears were using the preseason to practice kickoff coverage by sacrificing safety.

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Comments

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 17, 2012 7:32 am
 

Bears kicked off at the 30-yard-line: Why?



fghdfre
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 1, 2012 3:21 pm
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hgtrerte
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 26, 2011 6:14 pm
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tomlye
Since: Nov 28, 2011
Posted on: November 29, 2011 4:36 pm
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Tomly
Since: Oct 21, 2011
Posted on: October 24, 2011 10:51 am
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Since: Nov 1, 2010
Posted on: August 17, 2011 9:17 pm
 

Bears kicked off at the 30-yard-line: Why?

I wonder if this will be an issue in Madden 12?? I also wonder if the game will allow you to take offsides penalities so you can legally kick it 5 yards back.... hmmm??



Since: Aug 17, 2011
Posted on: August 17, 2011 2:12 pm
 

Bears kicked off at the 30-yard-line: Why?

No one will do this is a real game with the new condition that all players need to lineup within 5 yards of the ball.  Without the running start from the past coverage will be slower downfield and all teams will want touchbacks on all their kicks.




Since: Nov 21, 2006
Posted on: August 17, 2011 1:01 pm
 

Bears kicked off at the 30-yard-line: Why?

I'm a fan of a team that has for the most part been awful on returns for a long time.  That being said.  I don't like the change to the rules.  Along with what people in this thread have mentioned I feel like a few teams really got screwed here.



Since: Mar 28, 2009
Posted on: August 14, 2011 2:57 pm
 

Bears kicked off at the 30-yard-line: Why?

If you take a 5 yard penalty, can't the other team decline it?
 



Since: Jul 25, 2011
Posted on: August 14, 2011 2:48 pm
 

Bears kicked off at the 30-yard-line: Why?

To be honest I think it is a dumb rule. On one side my team, the Raiders, get hurt by this also because of the emergence of Jacoby Ford last year. Also it is always exciting when you can start off either half with a kick return for a TD it just brings momentum to that team. Also injuries are a part of the game, a very bad part. With that being said players are hurt on routine plays on offense or defense so to blame this rule change on safety doesn't really justify it.
But back to why the Bears were doing it, yea why not if players are going to attempt to return kicks from the back of the end zone why not make sure your coverage is good and make the other team pay. If the refs allowed them to do it during the game it obviously wasn't an issue or else it would have been addressed then and there!


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com