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Forward Fumble Rule: Where's the Logic?

philyew3's picture

Before I say more, I think that the Saints would almost certainly have wrapped the game up with possession at the Dallas 24, so this isn't a complaint about them getting the ball at the 2 yard line. However, there is a question of logic that needs to be answered: why is it that the ball can only be recovered by the person fumbling forward in the last two minutes of regulation, but by anyone when it happens in overtime?

I get that the rules revert to normal play, but do I misunderstand the intention of the rule in the last two minutes of play? Isn't it to stop the fumbling team gaining an unfair advantage in a time-critical situation?

Here's my problem: if the last two minutes of the game are time-critical, what is NOT time-critical about sudden death play? It's the very definition of time-critical - almost every play could span the last second of the game.

The contradictory fumble and non-fumble ruling between weeks 15 and 16 were a matter of interpretation, which is bad enough...but this is a contradiction inherent in the rules themselves. Time to get back to basics, Goodell: start fixing what's broken, instead of breaking what didn't need fixing.