Did you catch that?

On March 27, 2018, the NFL owners voted unanimously (32-0) to change the definition of catch for the NFL rulebook.

Here are the presented rules. The new rules defining a catch include:

  • Control of the ball.
  • Two feet down or another body part.
  • A football move such as: A third step, reaching/extending for the line-to-gain
  • Or the ability to perform such an act.

All of this is an effort to eliminate the gray area of catch rule by tossing out the going to the ground element that has everyone frustrated.

Infamous past calls such as Dez Bryant’s, wide receiver of the Dallas Cowboys, got his catch overturned from a catch to an incomplete pass in the 2014 NFC championship games. As Bryant was going to the ground, the ball moved around in his arms thus making the pass incomplete.

In more recent memory, in the week 15 game of the 2017 season, Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Jesse James dove and extended his arms to catch the ball and go into the end zone for a touchdown. Unfortunately, on his way to the ground, the ball popped out. That cost the Steelers the game and the spot in the playoff that year.

However, this new rule change does not alter anything to make a catch rule more clear. Instead, it made it more vague, especially with more vagueness of the language when it comes to the ability to make a football move.

The rule change is going to cause more issues regarding people’s own interpretation instead of what should be clean cut if the caught ball is in bounds.

By taking away the incomplete ruling of going to the ground, it is going to lead to increase in fumble calls.

For me, another issue is that using the ground to help secure a catch because now, going to the ground can be considered a football move even though they might not even have complete possession of the ball.

These are suppose to be professionals at the craft of playing football. This rule change is unnecessarily needed because there has been some controversial calls.

There are winners and losers to every competition. Just because calls don’t go the way you should be doesn’t mean you should get rid of that element.

It’s more on the players not make the plays well enough to win. Instead of being upset at the catch rule, they should train harder to cleanly catch the ball.