The Pro Bowl may be arguably the weakest all star game of the four big leagues in North America. However, anemic on entertainment and competition as it may be, it has become a proving grounds of sorts when it comes to new ideas and experimental rules. The 2020 Pro Bowl reaffirmed this when they utilized a new option for teams on kickoffs.
While the NFL currently tosses around the idea of seven new rules, one of those provides an alternative option to the onside kick. Make no mistake, the onside kick is still alive and well. This is more of an addition than a change. For a team looking to make an onside kick, they now have the alternate choice of taking immediate possession of the ball on their own 25-yard line. The catch to this is it’s instantly 4th down and 15 and teams would not be able to use this more than twice a game. To say this currently experimental option is a gamble is an understatement.
BleacherReport.com reported that this rule was actually proposed by the Denver Broncos last year, but the competition committee abruptly voted it down by a count of 7-1. As this unnamed concept comes around for a second vote in roughly fifteen months since the last ballot, it will be interesting to see if it has gained any ground in this short amount of time. One thing seems rather certain, however. If there is another 7-1 outcome against, or even 8-0 against, it will be quite some time, if ever, before the instant possession possibility sees the voting light of day again.