NFL rule changes
The major NFL rule changes that go into effect this season:
Uprights have been extended five feet to make it easier to judge field-goal attempts.
Definition of clipping has been expanded. Blockers already are not permitted to hit an opponent in the back of the legs, but this season blockers also will not be allowed to hit an opponent from the side below the waist. This is to protect players from getting their legs rolled on.
The referee will be able to consult with members of the NFL officiating department in New York to help in reviewing plays via replay.
The recovery of a loose ball/fumble in the field of play is reviewable.
The clock will no longer be stopped after a quarterback sack in the final two minutes of halves. Before it was stopped until the ball was spotted.
Defensive fouls behind the line will be enforced from the previous spot, rather than from the end of the run or from the spot of the foul.
Taunting and abusive language directed at players or officials gets zero tolerance; 15-yard unsportsmanlike penalty
Total prohibition of hands to the face. Before, such contact had to be "prolonged" or snap an opponent's head back to draw a flag. Now any hand to the face prompts a 10-yard penalty.
Using props to celebrate already was prohibited, but now the field-goal post is considered a prop. Translation: No dunking over the goal post or any other use of the apparatus.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times