NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell proposed an intriguing rule on Friday at his annual "state of the NFL" address. Goodell said he believes there should be automatic ejection when a player commits two personal fouls in a game. The answer came in response to a question about Vontze Burfict's personal fouls earlier this year.
Goodell said he has spoken with the competition committee, other owners and even players in coming up with this idea. It has not been formally proposed, but given his statement, it is safe to say we will hear more about this leading up to the annual spring owners' meeting in March.
There will be a whole lot to unravel with this potential rule. Personal fouls are all 15-yard penalties, but there are vastly different types of personal fouls. A defensive player purposely spearing a player over the middle of the field is the same penalty as someone grazing the quarterback at the wrong time. If a player commits egregious personal fouls, there can be value in automatic ejection. But what if a player has a couple ticky-tacky roughing the passer penalties?
There will be plenty of discussion between now and the spring owners' meetings. One would hope for some nuance on the rule, but the league has not exactly shown an ability to get this right on the first try.