NFL contemplating making extra point a 42-yard kick
Jan 19, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks kicker Steven Hauschka (4) kicks a field goal out of the hold by punter Jon Ryan (9) against the San Francisco 49ers during the first half of the 2013 NFC Championship football game at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
The NFL Competition Committee isn’t messing around with extra point attempts anymore. If a team wants that “extra” point, they are really going to have to work hard to get it.
According to NFL.com’s Judy Battista, the league is currently contemplating placing the ball at the 25-yard line for extra point attempts. That would make the extra point a 42-yard kick, 22 yards further than it is currently.
The reason for the possible adjustment comes down to simple statistics.
In 2013, kickers attempted 1,267 extra points and missed a grand total of five. That’s a 99.6 percent conversion rate, according to Battista.
“Are there any plays in the game that really are not consequential?” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said in January. “You want to add excitement with every play.”
Moving the ball back to the 25-yard line would make the extra point more difficult to obtain and not an outright guarantee.
Last season, kickers converted 83 percent of their field goal attempts between 40 and 49 yards, via Dan Hanzus at NFL.com.
The proposed change could be experimented with as early as the 2014 preseason.
“There is no consensus yet,” said one committee member said to NFL.com. “We could experiment in preseason, but we are not there yet.”
Interestingly, the two-point attempt would not be adjusted in any way. It would stay at the 2-yard line, perhaps giving coaches an incentive to go for two rather than try for the long one-point.
Since 2010, 214 two-point plays have been attempted and 108 have been converted, a 50.5 percent success rate.
In bad weather conditions or very close games, the new extra point rule could change the strategy of the game.
Would more coaches go for two, rather than trust their kicker?
If the Seahawks can reach an agreement with Steven Hauschka to remain with the team, they would have the luxury of being able to trust him to make the long extra point if they wanted. Last season, Hauschka converted 11 of his 12 field goal attempts between 40 and 49 yards.
The extra point proposal will be reviewed later this week, but even if passed, it may not take effect this season.