Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll isn’t happy with the NFL’s recent ban on players leaping over the line of scrimmage to block field goals and extra points.
In recent years, this has been a special teams staple for the Seahawks, but Carroll said the NFL didn’t show clips of the plays the Seahawks made when presenting the proposed change.
"Well, the examples that they showed us were the really bad examples," Carroll said via ESPN’s Sheil Kapadia. "They didn't show the examples of how pretty it is when a guy leaps over with great body control and makes the play and all.”
The Seahawks have been great at making it look pretty, and have executed the safest displays of the leap.
Kam Chancellor did it multiple times against the Carolina Panthers in the 2015 postseason. Bobby Wagner did it as well during the 2016 season against the Arizona Cardinals.
All 32 teams, including the Seahawks, voted in favor of the ban. Carroll said he understood that if the NFL showed their clips, their case to ban the play wouldn’t have been as strong.
“Guys were landing on their head and falling all over each other. It was a mess when we looked at it, so I couldn't vote against it the way it was going because they really did have examples that looked dangerous.”
Carroll is disappointed with the measure in part because it was a rare display of what made players like Chancellor and Wagner stand out.
“It was really just an opportunity to accentuate some of the special qualities of some of our guys, and Kam and Bobby were phenomenal at it.”
Players on the Seahawks weren’t happy about the new rule either. Chancellor took to Twitter to express his disapproval:
He doubled down on Instagram, with a photo of one his leaps against Carolina:
Michael Bennett felt that the change wasn’t instituted for safety reasons, but because the coaches didn’t like how they were turning points in many games.
“Most of the NFL games are decided by one point, unless you’re playing the Jaguars or something, then it’s decided by 50,” Bennett said in an entertaining appearance on FOX Sports. “The one point, blocking that, it makes a big difference.”
Despite the ban, Wagner doesn’t seem too fazed:
We are creative. We will find another way pic.twitter.com/p04yNBzDk5— Bobby Wagner (@Bwagz54) March 28, 2017
The Seahawks have been known to push the rules to the limit since Carroll’s arrival (and know them better than everyone else), but this was something that was well within the rules.
The main argument for the banning of the play was player safety. That’s something everybody can get behind, but it’s also easy to see why the Seahawks might be frustrated with it, when they always did it so well.