Marshall Faulk Among Running Backs Enraged by NFL’s Proposed Rule Change, Calls it ‘Joke’

The NFL competition committee makes changes every year to try and enhance player safety on the field. But their newest rule proposal isn’t being received very well by some players, past and present

The league proposed a new rule that would make it illegal for a running back to lower his helmet when making contact outside the tackle box. So, naturally, running backs are the ones speaking out against the possible rule change, including Hall of Famer Marshall Faulk.

After learning of the rule this weekend, Faulk took to Twitter to release his frustration even calling it a “joke.”

Bears running back Matt Forte also commented on the rule change, calling it “absurd,” according to ESPN Chicago. As did Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith, who questioned whether the NFL should get their own head examined for such a rule on a Dallas radio station, saying “You’ve absolutely lost your mind.”

The players have a point as, if passed, the rule would take away one of the running back’s biggest assets in the open field. Many backs will lower their head to initiate contact and shed tacklers, allowing them to gain more yards or even break free on long runs. But the NFL has a valid reason for proposing the rule, too.

With so much emphasis on player safety today, the league is trying to limit and hopefully some day eliminate concussions altogether. This change would likely decrease the amount of head trauma running backs endure on a weekly basis and at least limit the long-term effects.

The focus will now shift to Phoenix, Ariz., where the owners will vote on this and other proposed rule changes at the NFL Annual Meeting this week.

Have a question for Luke Hughes? Send it to him via Twitter at @LukeFHughes or send it here.

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