Steelers: Do Fans Take the Kicking Game for Granted?


Will the Steelers benefit from the new Point After Touchdown rule? Will this attempt liven up a part of the game that fans often take for granted work?

Let’s face it. How often do you go ahead and start your break as soon as the touchdown is scored? How often do you hang on the edge of your seat for the PAT?

Field goals can be a bit more exciting. The weather conditions can affect the kick and if the kicker is at his max distance from the goal, it can have you holding your breath, Particularly if the game is close and it’s in the fourth quarter, right?

But still, is it the same as the quarterback lobbing a long pass down the field?

I think the rules have made it harder to block a kick and fans don’t worry about that part of the game as much.  Just don’t let the kicker screw it up.

As Craig Gottschalk pointed out a few days ago, kickers usually don’t get beyond the “tolerated” level with NFL fans and woe be to them if they miss a field goal or the PAT. The same goes for the punter – he better not give the opponent good field position.

So now, as Mike Prisuta discusses, the PAT is moved back to the 15-yard line and the 2-point conversion still runs from the 2-yard line making the latter option more attractive.

Will this be what keeps people watching the game and not starting for the bathroom, the snack table or the bar for a fresh cold beverage?

I know that in previous games, if it looked like the team was going to go for 2, I stayed through the play.

This all could be a conspiracy though.  Remember Jeff Reed? Mark Kaboly of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review quoted him:

"I can say this right now because I am not playing anymore, but I think (commissioner) Roger Goodell is trying to get rid of kickers”"

Oh Jeff. Still keeping it real.

Here’s where I am with this:  Have a kicker who can’t make the PAT? He’s gone. Like the day after the game gone.  However, that dependability can be a bit boring in the kicking department.

Now let’s try making it more difficult to kick the PAT. Can we never be satisfied?

On the Steeler front:  Will this rule change anything for Shaun Suisham and how many time he kicks a PAT? Possibly, particularly at home if he is kicking into the open end zone where the winds just swirl around.

Overall:  Will this change liven up the kicking game or is the NFL one step closer to eliminating the kicking position or is it somewhere in between?

I choose the middle ground.  I don’t sense a conspiracy, but I’m not sure this will produce the results the NFL wants, if the owners even know what they want.

I think fans take half of the kicking game for granted. Field Goals remain a key part of the game, but the extra point is only exciting when the game is that close.  Moving the PAT attempts back to the 15-yard line does not change that.

What do you think Steeler Nation?

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