New Rules And Drafting Defenders

April 22nd, 2018

Dude — that jacket. Why?”

At this point, nobody has an idea outside of the tightest of tight circles within the NFL how the new no helmet-first rule will affect the league.

This new rule was passed at the owners meetings last month in Orlando. Former Bucs general manager Rick McKay, chairman of the competition committee that oversees rules changes, suggested it could radically change the game.

Texans coach Bill O’Brien told the creator, curator and overall guru of Pro Football Talk, the great Mike Florio, only about a half-dozen plays last year would have been changed had the new rule been in effect.

So which is it?

No one really knows for sure, again, outside of the close quarters of the NFL. Even players seem a bit confused.

So last week Joe asked Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht if the new rule has changed the way he is evaluating potential defensive draft picks. Licht didn’t think so, suggesting players adapt and he said college is a perfect example of that.

“I think with the college rules, the targeting rule in place, it’s kind of helped us already in terms of the days of Chuck Cecil are over,” Licht said. “Those players are now trained and coached to tackle properly and tackle the way of this rule that’s in place. So, it really hasn’t changed. We feel the players that we’re looking at right now in this year’s draft at the positions that you’re talking about, that would be related to, we don’t see any issues.

“Once again, the guys, we’ll coach them properly. Coach Koetter and his staff, I know they’re going to do their best to coach these guys properly to adhere to the rules. Player safety is the number one thing for us and for around the league. So we’ll adhere to it and the game will adjust.”

Look, Joe loves bone-rattling hits as much as the next red-blooded American male. But as Joe wrote last week, this new rule might actually improve tackling.

As Kwon Alexander said, guys are going to have to wrap up now. And wrapping up is a key element in fundamental tackling.

29 Responses to “New Rules And Drafting Defenders”

  1. JonBuc Says:

    Any chance that’s our new GM?! Licht looks like a movie usher…maybe he can watch Draft Day with Kevin Costner ( which actually is a decent movie ).

  2. JonBuc Says:

    #Moderation Nation

  3. First Down Tampa Bay Says:

    If we tackled Seth Roberts maybe we would’ve been in the playoffs.

  4. Bucco bruce Says:

    Flags are next!then everyone will be watching xfl.

  5. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Speaking for Pablo

    “Pablo has led with his head all Pablo’s live….this is why Pablo has so many, many many Childrens. Pablo believe Pablo’s Bucs should draft players without any heads like ASJ.”

  6. AlteredEgo Says:

    You Rich McKay…if the new rule could dramatically change the game…how about explaining….in a game of collision …where two men collide with heads approximately the same height off the ground…just how are their heads not supposed to clunk each others…..we all know how arbitrary all the other “new rules” have become….hands to the face….roughing the passer…holding….this is going to be a cluster buck

  7. Blake_Bucsfan Says:

    The thing about the new rule that scares me the most is not how it will effect defenders, but how it will effect running backs. A universal tactic that Running backs use at every level between High school and the NFL, is to lower your head and try to punch through the defensive line for a first down or a touch down.

    Under the language of the new rule, that should now be illegal. How many touchdowns are going to be overturned because of this rule?

  8. Dooshlarue Says:

    I think the rule was put into place to eliminate the almost late hits from second and third tacklers flying in and leading with their helmet. If this is the case I’m all for it.

  9. Eric Says:

    Won’t matter to us we don’t tackle at all.

  10. jmarkbuc Says:

    Thats the straight truth Eric

  11. NFLNut Says:

    ^ Hahahaha … sad but true … at least in the secondary. But, Derwin James could fix that although I only want him if we trade down with the Dolphins, Bills or Cardinals.

  12. AlteredEgo Says:

    So…is the NFL going to call this new rule…The Deion Sanders Proper Tackling Technique….?

  13. John meeks Says:

    Oh how I miss Paul Tagliabue!The league has gotten worse every single year since he retired.

  14. AlteredEgo Says:

    It will be called the…….
    u herd it here 1st…
    The Vegas Rule…

  15. Easy Says:

    Kwon needs to learn to wrap up and tackle.

  16. SB Says:

    Lol, I posted the link to Scott Brantley hitting Hipple 2 days ago telling someone that I was a Jr in HS when I saw that hit live. I was second row for the hit! It was epic! thing is it was a shoulder to shoulder hit! Legal even today.
    One of my favorite hits ever though was Lynch hitting his brother in law so hard he knocked him out and then just walked away as if it was all business

  17. AlteredEgo Says:

    SB…I was at that game too………

  18. SB Says:

    Tight work Altered. Nice to have people around that have been with the Bucs that long!

  19. John meeks Says:

    SB,I remember #52 hitting hipple, and the best thing about the John Lynch hit was both of the players wives were at the game in a booth and live tv showed both wives looking terrified!it was indeed two classic moments!

  20. SB Says:

    @ JMeeks……Yes I saw that the next day!!! It was Awkward to say the least I imagine for the family! At the time though I was just a 17 yr old kid and I have re-lived that moment for a bit now!

  21. passthebuc Says:

    is there any legitimacy to the NFL sponsoring a flag football team

  22. feelthepewterpower Says:

    Don’t have to worry about tackling issues, with this guy, unlike James – Ray Lewis’ seal of approval: Minkah Fitz.

  23. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    We can have our cake and eat it too…that is if the cake is simply messing up a guy for a portion of the game…perhaps instilling a little fear…making an opponent play differently because of a violent hit.

    When I was a Bengals fan we hated the Browns and the Steelers. Bill Bergey was playing for us before he went to Philly. Terry Bradshaw dropped back to pass and while he was looking downfield Bergey just smashed him…hitting him with his shoulder right into Bradshaw’s bread basket.

    He had to be helped off the field where he fell to all fours and started puking.
    We bloodthirsty Bengal fans gave him a standing ovation for the barf LMAO

    Had no effect on Bradshaws season much less his career. It DID have an effect on the remainder of that football game.

  24. Bucnjim Says:

    Hard hitting has taken a back seat but if you notice physical players still dominate as the game gets into the third and fourth quarters. Physical play wears an opponent down and eventually takes his spirit away knowing he is getting beat on most plays. Team sport but the mentally and physically strong are winning their position battles. The finesse players have quit before halftime unless everything is going perfect! Sounds familiar?

  25. JimmyJack Says:

    I agree Bucnjim…….That’s why you draft a G at #7. Some folks think that physical football doesn’t impact a game and only the guys who make SportCenter can.

    Whatever I’m fine with that maybe they don’t impact a games maybe they just control it.

    I remember our game at Carolina. Our entire Oline was outmatched(in both games against them BTW). We missed TDS on something like 5-6 redzone trips. On each of those misses Carolinas Dline was the biggest factor. Their interior pressure was blowing us off the ball, along with the edge………Put a guy like Nelson on our line and that doesn’t happen every trip to the redzone. He would make a difference in that game and help us get more TDS and we probably win.

  26. AlteredEgo Says:

    ^^^ Bucnjim…I hope so….but the corporate revenuers have sucked the life out of the game both stadium live and on TV…new game in town…and the newcomers in to the tent never saw the last show…

  27. AlteredEgo Says:

    ^^^ Ronde is saying….you gonna draft Calvin Ridley ?

  28. adam from ny Says:


    Licht is a big time Ron Burgundy fan and dresses appropriately to represent his dude 🙂

  29. teacherman777 Says:


    Too many cheap safeties come in late and hit a guy who is already down.

    The NFL must evolve.

    We don’t want our culture to become barbaric and satanic like Ancient Rome.

    These men are not “gladiators.” They are fathers.