NFL / cfl
Why the NFL rules supreme over the CFL!!
As I sit here and wait to watch Monday Night Football, I can't help but think back to a conversation I had with @mikey over the weekend. On Saturday I mentioned how I just bought tickets to the Bills and Bears game in November. We were joking about just how bad the score might be. When he jokingly said the score could be 2-0 I responded with "Why not 1-0?" Of course, this makes no sense. It isn't possible. At least not when you are playing real football. When I say real football, I am referring to American football and the NFL. However, I am Canadian and for some reason, we Canucks feel the need to do football differently and not necessarily for the better if you ask me. There are some BIG differences in the way football is played in the NFL and the CFL and they are not pretty. The NFL is a seductive mistress Source That conversation on Saturday had me thinking about all the differences between the CFL and the NFL and why it is that I love the NFL so much more. You might be surprised to find out just how many differences there are. The FieldI'm not entirely sure why but in Canada someone decided that the field needed to be much bigger than in American football. If they were thinking bigger is better, they missed the mark in my opinion. The worst part is, it had nothing to do with the differences between the metric and the imperial system of measurement. The CFL field is 110 yards versus 100 yards in the NFL. Basically, there is a 10-yard neutral zone in the middle of the field. I could deal with that but then there is also the width of the field. A Canadian field is 65 yards compared to 50 yards. This creates way more open space. Maybe not a bad thing but they didn't even end there. To put it right over the top, the end zone is 20 yards deep instead of 10. Why not give them a country mile to make a play. Bigger is not better!2. The BallUsually, you would think that bigger balls could be a good thing but not when it comes to football. The CFL ball is bigger than a regulation NFL ball and significantly bigger than a Tom Brady special. I'm honestly not sure he could even get his hands around one of these bad boys. I can only imagine what goes through the heads of quarterbacks that come up from U.S college football and first handle these monsters. Currently, the CFL is looking into changing to new ball specifications that would be more closely matched to the NFL. Oh yeah, Canadians need help seeing the ball apparently so we have white strips to make them easier to find? Some Canadians use this as a positive (Not me) Source3. 4 Downs vs 3 DownsIn the NFL teams have 4 downs to get 10 yards and another set of downs. In the CFL you only get 3 downs to accomplish this. I struggle with this difference so much. Essentially what is happening is that in the CFL teams only have 2 downs to get 10 yards because that final down is typically a punting down, as it is in the NFL as well. Only having 2 opportunities to get 10 yards really reduces the variety of plays that offences might use. This also significantly reduces the number of rushing attempts that a team will use. This frustrates me personally because I am a huge fan of running backs and watching a teams rushing attack.4. 12 players vs 11Well, this only makes sense, doesn't it? If you are going to make the field so much bigger then you might as well add players to the game. Heck, why stop at 12? I am sure we could fit about 15 on each side with the monstrosity of a field we use.5. Players in motionThis rule might be the difference that makes me dislike the CFL more than any other. In the NFL, you can only have one player in motion before the snap and he must actually reset if he gets back to the line of scrimmage. Basically, he cannot move forward. In the CFL, any players behind the line of scrimmage may move around as much as they want and in any direction. WHAT??? Yes, that's right. CFL WR's and RB's can get a full running start before the snap giving them a huge advantage on defensive players. Talk about making a league commitment to pushing for a high number of passes. The CFL is a passing league. Can you imagine if WR'sw could get a running start in the NFL? 6. The Goal PostsThis one has a couple of impacts on the game. One I like and the others that make no sense. The goal posts in the CFL are on the goal line. First of all, this is a bit of a safety hazard in my opinion not to mention how the post can act as another defender. When you are running routes near the end zone you have to be just as aware of where the goal post is as where the defenders are. Why do this anyway? You have gone and made the field 10 yards longer and then basically nullify that by bringing the goal posts right up on the goal line. The one cool side effect of this rule is that there is a lot more potential for a FG to be returned when it is missed. In the NFL, most missed kicks still sail out of the field of play whereas in the CFL there is a 20-yard end zone and missed kicks are returned more often.7. No Fair CatchIn the CFL you are not allowed to call for a fair catch. The rules encourage the return of every kick. This is great in theory and can create more exciting plays. However, there is also a "No Yards" rule attached to this. Defending players must give the kick returner 5 yards when receiving a kick. This makes it safer but also provides a potential advantage to the returner as the defenders will often have to come to a complete stop and wait for the ball to be caught. 8. The RougeOf all the differences between the NFL and the CFL, this is the one I dislike the most. If you watched the above video and happened to look at the score at the start, you might have been wondering how on earth there could ever be a 1-0 score in a football game. Welcome to the CFL!! A rouge or a single is where a single point is awarded to a team if they can pin the other team in their own end zone. scoring one point, is awarded when the ball is kicked into the end zone by any legal means, other than a convert (successful or not) or a successful field goal, and the receiving team does not return, or kick, the ball out of its end zone. It is also a single if the kick travels through the end zone or, other than on a kickoff, if it goes out of bounds in the end zone without being touched. After conceding a single, the receiving team is awarded possession of the ball at the 35-yard line of its own end of the field. SourceThis rule drives me crazy. A single point being awarded this way really makes no sense to me. It actually encourages teams to play more boring football and kick away for single points rather than attempt a good football play. Imagine losing a game this way. It actually happens in the CFL. I can see trying to boost scoring but come on, this is too much. I might be a Canadian but when it comes to my football, I am an American Football lover through and through. I am actually a touch football coach and am forced to coach and play the Canadian rules. It can sometimes be hard to stomach playing for single points but you have to play to the rules. I live in a CFL city and just bought tickets to go to Buffalo and watch a game. This was both more expensive and inconvenient. In my life, the NFL is king and the CFL is a much lesser version of the real football I adore. I'd suggest checking out a CFL game to see all these different nuances in action but let's be honest, you'd enjoy watching the NFL much more.
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