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Off-season debate topic: Future trends for the NFL?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by zarakotas5, Jun 23, 2007.

  1. zarakotas5

    zarakotas5 Rookie

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    What do you think they might be? The game has and continues to evolve vastly. From the wishbone to the 4-6 to the Tampa-2. From three yards and a cloud of dust to the present state of the TE and the return of the two-back set. What do you think, and why?

    Maybe you think the surprise Clint Oldenberg pick will harken is a new day of eligible tackle receivers. Maybe the Texas Tech/Hawaii college style will utilize the increasing speed game, etc.

    Will trends be predicated by the source (NCAA), or will a fundamental difference persist.

    Etc, etc. I think this might be interesting to hear ideas about. Hopefully y'all wonder about it, too, and want to discuss.
  2. BHSL2

    BHSL2 Rookie

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    I think Fullback, more specifically H-Back, could become a very dynamic part of offenses in the near future. Look at what a guy like Chris Cooley can do. The Patriots' own Garrett Mills falls into this category - a big back with good hands. Even the Chargers recognize it - they drafted Legedu Naane, a 6-3 225 pound receiver/fullback/tightend/runningback. I think the H-Back will provide a lot of versatility and or options for the offense.

    I love the 3-4 defense, but I think there are some teams who install the system the wrong way. So many people think that if you have 4+ talented LBs on a roster, the 3-4 is the defense for you. But you eed 3 stout d-linemen (including a dominant Nose tackle), 2 utilitarian ILBs, and 2 versatile guys and or an elephant. The worst thing is when coordinators take their 280 pound rushing DEs who played in the previous system and try to turn them into elephants. To bad elephants need to be "athletic".

    On the same note, I'm a little weary of the 4-3 defense. It's becoming hard for coordinators to find their rushing DEs. What the Jaguars do is invest in run-stuffing DEs because they are cheap, but JAX has not recently been able to generate a pass rush.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2007
  3. zarakotas5

    zarakotas5 Rookie

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    That's one I wonder about. Supposedly every team loved Mills as a player. Thing is, where does he play? Devin Hester was similarly (and more universally and highly) regarded.

    Hell, Reggie Bush himself may (or may be forced to) define a new position. I'm curious about "new" positions as one way for the NFL to evolve.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2007
  4. BHSL2

    BHSL2 Rookie

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    Mills most likely plays wherever the coordinator best thinks he can deceive an opposing defense on a given play. But I think the line of scrimmage will be where he starts.

    I like what Bush brings too. He's more of a weapon than a back or receiver. I would love ot see what he could do in more of a West-Coast type offense, but then again, it's other scheme I don't particularly fancy.
  5. gomezcat

    gomezcat It's SIR Moderator to you Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    If we see more spread offences, then perhaps we'll actually see guys on both sides of the ball get smaller. People weighing 350lbs would, if the theory is correct, be redundant. That would, at least, bring health benefits; I haven't seen anyone weighing over 330 who doesn't have a big gut. I say that as someone who is trying to get rid of my own gut, BTW.

    I also think that the "base" 3-4 or 4-3 will be used less and less, to the point where it won't really mean much. We're already seeing that anyway and patfanken made this point, in one of his excellent posts, related to the importance of the linebacker position.

    This all depends on whether the NFL wants to see more passing, altering the rules to make this happen. I hope they keep the balance in the game, but then I'm not the casual fan they want to attract.
  6. PonyExpress

    PonyExpress Rookie

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    I see a trend where less and less violence will be permitted between the lines, leading to the eventual disintegration of the grass roots fan base in favor of an entirely corporate crowd, until the NFL loses its soul. Similar trends occurred in the NHL and the NBA, and those leagues are withering on the vine. I give the NFL a 10 year life span as we know it; then another 10 years living off its rep; and then 10 years during which once hard-core fans wake up and realize the product $ucks. By then it will be internationalized and its fundamental character will be diminished. Fortunately, by then I will have already swilled myself into an alcoholic stupor and, blissfully unaware, the bastardization of my beloved sport will seem like just another passing shadow.:)
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2007
  7. rabthepat

    rabthepat Rookie

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    I think the major future trends in the NFL will deal with money not with the game on the field. "Dollar-ification" of the game will become rampant in order to maintain revenue growth and shareholder values. I think we will begin to see such things as;

    1) TV adds during game live action.
    2) Sponsor adds on team uniforms.
    3) Sponsors adds on the field. Ex. "The Subway Sandwich End Zone"
    4) More NFL games played on foreign soil until they can financially justify a new team abroad.
    5) Modification of historical rules to placate a new fan base. Less defense, more scoring, elimination of current OT rules, make 1st downs easier, etc.
    6) Playoffs and Superbowl pay per view.
    7) Megaplex stadiums.
    8) Make the NFL season a year round event. No offseasons, more games, create best of 3 play off series...
  8. Pats726

    Pats726 Rookie

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    An interesting bunch of things which I hate to say will make the NFL NOT better but nuch worse.......
    1----I think THIS would be totally horrible...I would boycott ANY advertiser distracting one from the game..and would HOPE ALL fans do that..it's bad enough with commercials now..VERY bad..and I hope in the far off future....
    2----I'd hate this as well BUT I could live with it..more so than 1..anyway to make a buck?? Race drivers do it now..so???
    3---I'd hate that as well but it may happen..still better than 1...
    4--Stretching the product to new fans..IT MAY not work..this I mind less than many others..
    5----Changing the game ALREADY has happened..it's time that the "offense means better games" crowd gets kicked in the rear...Time for D to stop that and other wimpy trends..If that's all u want go to the AFL...
    6---THAt would REALLY stink..no need for it at all..making even More money??
    Maybe they will kill teh whole thing...BAD idea..but it may come to that
    7----Yup..this isn't all that bad..thank teh lord some of these are better than others...
    8----They extend the year enough...might like some of it..I think the NFLPA may not
    A great list though..thoughtful and trends that REAL football fans hate..GREAT WORK!!!
  9. livinginthe past

    livinginthe past Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    I would just like to add that new or foreign members of a new fanbase would not necessarily welcome 'easier 1st downs' or, indeed, higher scoring.

    One of the major negatives about games such as basketball is their inherent high volume of scoring - its makes it very difficult to get excited about individual scores (or TD's in this case).

    I do see a future where NFL totally sells its corporate soul, to the point where whole teams are sponsored but I hope that is some distance away.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2007
  10. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I'm with "living" here. Some NFL representative actually discussed the "optimal" points per game maybe a couple years ago, and they were right where they wanted to be.

    I don't think we want more scoring, as a rule, and extending/"globalizing" the game will mean appealing to people used to thinking of 3-1 as a slaughter. In fact, to make a better analog for Europeans, they might want to do away with the extra point and field goals, and award a single point for a TD.

    Of course, they won't. But you get the idea.

    The year-round problem is a tough one. I would be a huge fan of some kind of "minor league" football, allied with the actual NFL - a farm system. Europe didn't work that way, of course. But it would be far superior to see marginal guys if they have a chance to "make it." Just make it a league where the annual rookie-deal salary structure (rookie, 1 yr vet, 2 yr vet minimums) pertain) but the money doesn't get better. You get stashed there, but if you don't make it in 3 years, well then you're a minor leaguer, period, and probably get pushed out soon enough. But the goal would be to develop guys who end up in the pros without screwing them financially (rookie money would still be around, whichever end you end up in.) And yes, play those rookie league games in the north, in Domes, whatever, March to (say) June. That would give minor league teams a big bump as their major league franchise allocates guys post-draft.

    Hey, I didn't say I expect it, I said I liked it.

    The globalization of the sport seems to be going another whole direction, now that the WLAF/NFL Europe/NFL Europa seems to be in less than perfect shape. Ship games over there a few at a time... what is phase III? Do they ever want to really see an "AFC Really East" and "NFC Really East," or an "AFC Far East" or an "NFC South Of the Border" division?

    I personally do not get what the plan is here. Are they thinking they can create a fan base, without the fan rooting for his (even sort-of) local team?

    I disagree that the game will be watered down to unrecognizability. I do think they put in new rules all the time to "protect" vulnerable players, but they affect the game around the edges. The major beneficiaries in the last 5 years haven't been in the trenches. They've been receivers who are no longer considered pieces of luggage with handles for DBacks to pull them around by, and QBs who want their knees to bend with the knobby part pointing out, if at all possible. I don't think 40 years will change the game like the first 40 years or so changed it, from a run-only league with virtually no pads, to a high-velocity collision sport with both air and ground games, which no human could survive without really durable helmets, pads, and face guards.

    To keep the NFL money pie expanding, they'll no doubt try everything. The expansion of commercializtion has been mentioned, and I think that is (regrettably) coming. Oddly enough, that's just a big-dollar way to come full circle. Many forget that the Green Bay Packers started out as the Green Bay Fudge Packers, named for a factory that made candy or something like that. Anyway I don't see it going counter to fan loyalty if we end up with a Michelin patch or something on our beloved uniform. Ugly, yes -- but we would still shrug and watch. It's calling the team the New England Michelin Patriots that won't fly... so the "old timer" base might be a partial drag on that movement.

    Finally, in the far future, the QB will be allowed to plant a rhythmic thumping stick in the grainy turf to call a giant sandworm, and, if he can successfully mount it without being sacked, and stay atop it, the QB will be permitted to ride to victory in the end zone, unless a defensive player is able to divert the great beast out of bounds by establishing a defensive perimeter of water, which is poisonous to it.

    PFnV
  11. BB_dynasty

    BB_dynasty Rookie

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    The thing with adds, is that many European Soccer teams already have advertising on uniforms, and it still stays popular. (ex. AIG with manchester united) I mean sure it makes the uniforms ugly, and if anything, I am not sure about other people, but when I see an annoying advertisement like that, I specifically do not buy the product, and I will step out of my way to not buy it.
  12. rabthepat

    rabthepat Rookie

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    I agree with you on the high scoring games in the NBA. Yet, at where I work there are about 5 or 6 of us die hard football fans who talk football everyday all year round and when a casual football fan joins our conversations they frequently say they would like to see less field goals, punts and more TDs.

    Also, when I used to watch NFL Europe it seemed like the European fans only seemed to really get the sport when TDs were scored.(my opinion)

    Just as a side note, I gave up on NFL Europe when Rohan Davey had that stellar year over there then came back here and sucked in the preseason.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2007
  13. rabthepat

    rabthepat Rookie

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    Me too...I do it also with pop ups on web pages.
  14. PatsWickedPissah

    PatsWickedPissah PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Disable Jersey

    What we WILL see is interactive TV where the viewer selects the camera angle and/or topic of focus. Think Cheerleader cam for guys like NUT. Wide angle HDTV views of the defensive coverage would be popular with BOX.
  15. gomezcat

    gomezcat It's SIR Moderator to you Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    As a Manchester United of 30 years, I agree. The scary thing is that you stop noticing these things, until the day when you wake up and realise that your hometown team has been taken over by sharks and glory hunters. :mad:

    To address the points in this thread about less D, that would be the worst way to appeal to foreigners. People who follow Football, wherever they live in the world, watch it because we like the hits, the sacks, the blitzes, great line play (on both sides of the ball) and the strategic nature of the game. Yes, we also like watching great offences.
    However, let's be honest here. We like watching a violent game, not basketball. I think the NFL recognises this. If they don't, more fool them.
  16. AzPatsFan

    AzPatsFan On the Roster

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    Off the field, I agree that dollarization will have an effect.

    But in reverse.

    Football is broadcast on Sunday, Sunday night, Monday Night, Thursday night, and some times on Saturday as well.

    There is a certainty of over exposure, and boredom followed by already declining audiences. Smaller audiences will eventually mean smaller TV contracts.

    The really hard job will be when the cap shrinks every year. Do you think players Will be happy constantly being asked to take pay cuts? The team disruptions will be enormous. But that is coming within the decade.
  17. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Rookie

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    #75 Jersey

    There's going to have to be a new defensive scheme that can reliably shut down the athletic quarterback freaks that will probably start coming out of college in large numbers. The 6'5" 240 lb 4.4 running laser arm guy. Maybe a 5-3-3 defensive lineup.
  18. stinkypete

    stinkypete Rookie

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    #24 Jersey

    OK, back to reality (and the near future) here.

    I think the 3-4 defense is a waning trend in the NFL. As recently as 2004, 12 teams were running the 3-4, now I can only think of 2 teams that have the system firmly in place (New England and San Diego) and a few others that are in various stages of transition (Arizona, NY Jets, San Francisco).

    The new vogue defense is the Tampa 2, and with that, I see a shift from in-the-box run support linebackers to undersized, coverage-first linebackers. The rise of the S/LB may be a trend of the near-future.

    I think another is the return of the slow, tall, pocket passer. This decade has been dominated by Brady, Manning, and scrambling QBs (Vick, Culpepper, McNair, Fiedler, Gannon, Plummer, Roethlisburger). A few years ago it seemed like the wave of the future. In more recent years, we've seen the ascent of Palmer, Brees and Rivers while the most promising guys (Russell, Cutler, Alex Smith) are all strong armed pocket guys.
  19. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Rookie

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    #75 Jersey

    And Dallas. And Cleveland. The 49ers have been full-time for two years. The Jets are committed to it. As long as LeBeau is Steelers DC, they'll run it at least part-time. I still think the Ravens and Raiders would like to run it if they had the personnel.

    I think it's just going to depend on which coaches are recycled and which ones are canned. With so few colleges running the 3-4, everytime a coach like Petrino or Kiffin comes into the league, the entire breadth of their knowledge is 4-3.
  20. zarakotas5

    zarakotas5 Rookie

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    I've yet to read the rest of the responses, but, ay, I'm within driving distance of the Manch and would be willing to pay for the priviledge...poor soul.

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