The Future of the NFL: Is the extra point a thing of the past?

“Put it in our hands. I want the ball. Any player would relish that opportunity.” -Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger

Last season there was much ado about the new extra point rule changes. PATs, which were formerly placed on the two yard line, were moved to the 15 yard line. Many speculated about the impact this key rule change would have on the NFL. Well the stats are in.

  • In 2015 there were only five teams to not attempt a two point conversion as opposed to eight in 2014.
  • Two Point Conversion attempts increased by 65% (!)
  • PAT success rates dropped by 5.1%

Obviously the change had quite the impact. The Pittsburgh Steelers in particular saw great success in 2015 when going for two. They attempted 11 two point conversions (more than double any team attempts in 2014) and were successful 72.7% of the time, or eight scores for those out there counting. Had Big Ben stayed healthy the number would have very likely been higher. So it’s no surprise that reports coming from The Steelers camp suggest that there will be more of the same from The Pittsburgh offense in 2016. In fact, Roethlisberger wants to go for two every time.

Other quarterbacks are weighing in on the two point question. Drew Brees went on the record on the Dan Patrick Show saying that he is “all for” going for two every time.

And although teams considering the change in offensive strategy may seem like pioneers, the math is sound. If the PAT percentage remains the same from last season, teams would only have to convert 47.1% of attempts to make up the difference. (The 2015 conversion average was 47.9%) If I was a betting woman (and I am) I’d place my money on the number of two point conversion attempts continuing to increase in 2016.

Fantasy Perspective:

Two point conversions are very likely to be more of a staple in offensive strategy next season. This obviously means more opportunities for fantasy points. The beneficiaries of this are strong mobile quarterbacks like Ben Roethlisberger, Andy Dalton, Jameis Winston, and Cam Newton and pass catching running backs such as Le’Veon Bell, David Johnson, Mark Ingram, and Matt Forte. The obvious losers are (as usual) the kickers.

Read what I had to say last season about the rule change on YourFantasyFootballCoach.com

Kickers and the Extra Point

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The Pittsburgh Steelers Have Release Josh Scobee

Josh Scobee has learned the first rule of football. Don’t piss off Snoop dog.

I’m sure Scobee’s release doesn’t come as a shock to many. Josh Scobee has performed at a less than desirable level during his employment with The Steelers. He missed a field goal early in the season that left Head Coach Mike Tomlin, and The Steelers organization doubtful of their kicker’s potential. As a result Pittsburgh turned it’s eye instead to the two point conversion, and took more risks in the red zone. In the wake of a lackluster performance, Twitter has been less than kind.

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It was Scobee’s Thursday night performance that sealed his fate. Scobee missed two critical field goals from 40+ yards. As a direct response to his less than stellar performance, The Steelers chose to go for it on a fourth down in overtime against the Baltimore Ravens. They failed to convert on the down. They went on to lose to the Ravens by three.

The Steelers have officially signed free agent Chris Boswell. Scobee finished his tenure with The Steelers making 6 of 7 extra points, and 6 of 10 field goals. It’s currently a hard time in the NFL for kickers.