The NFL has banned the bunch formation on onside kicks and the wedge formation on kickoff returns. All this will do is result in fewer successful onside kicks and fewer long kickoff returns. Sure, the wedge-busters won’t have to hit 800 lbs of man at full speed anymore, but the side effect is that the kick returners will now see more full speed collisions. This basically ruins the standard kickoff return for a small advantage in safety.

I’m not opposed to increased safety. It was a good rule change a couple of years ago when they said you can’t line-up directly across from the Center on punts and field goals. That change gives the snapper a chance to lift his head back up before he gets run-over. But I don’t like killing off the wedge formation. And I say that as someone who was petrified every time I ever covered a kickoff return. I know of nothing as violent in all of organized sports. But that’s what makes football so interesting. Not everyone in insane enough to play it.

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