In the new cover story for Time Magazine, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell opens up about some of the ways he hopes to reform the sport so it takes less of a toll on its athletes. One of the ideas on the table is doing away with kickoffs, which are seen by many to be one of the most dangerous elements of the game. Right now it’s only a suggestion, but it has fans and professionals alike debating the idea and wondering what’s in store for the future of football.
The league’s already tinkered with kickoffs, moving them up five yards which has limited kick returns. By all accounts, those typically frantic plays present the most risk to players, and studies have shown a correlation to that change with fewer concussions.
Former NFL Linebacker and Sports Analyst Coy Wire supports the decision to eliminate kickoffs from football in order to make the game safer. He views the change as another stage in the evolution of the sport as players get stronger and faster. “It’s necessary to change when change is necessary. Not to change is disruptive,” he says. “The game from its beginnings has always been in a state of evolution to make it better.”