NFL Playoff Overtime Rules: 'Modified' Sudden Death

If the Pittsburgh Steelers and Denver Broncos go to overtime, it will be the first game played under the NFL's "modified sudden-death" system.

While regular season overtime games were left unchanged, the league's owners voted to change the system for playoff games last March.

Now, unless the team that receives the ball first scores a touchdown, the other team will have a chance to answer. So if Pittsburgh kicked a field goal on their opening possession, Denver would be given one chance to either match the field goal or win the game with a touchdown.

However, if the teams are even after their first possessions, the game reverts to a sudden-death format.


More: Tebow Time! Broncos Beat Steelers in OT | Complete Playoff Schedule | SI.com: Grading the game

For a team like the Broncos with a strong defense, the real intrigue is whether to accept the ball if they win the coin toss. If they are confident they can get the Steelers in a three-and-out, they would set themselves up for great field position to get a game-winning field-goal, especially with the range of K Matt Prater, as Prater has already made a game-winning 59-yarder this season.

Each team will be given three timeouts and all replays will be handled by the booth.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.