NFL not looking to eliminate kickoffs for 2018

The NFL isn’t looking to eliminate kickoffs for the 2018 season, although it is seeking ways to make the play safer.

League executive vice president Troy Vincent said the NFL hopes to make changes to alignment and formation requirements in hopes of fixing what data has shown is the most dangerous play of the game, according to ESPN.

Vincent was speaking at the start of a two-day player-safety summit on Tuesday.

“There’s no question that this is not about getting it out of the game,” Vincent told reporters. “It’s about enhancing it.”

According to NFL data, players were five times more likely to suffer a concussion during a kickoff during the 2017 season than on any other play.

There had been murmurings that the kickoff could be eliminated if it could not be made safer, with Green Bay Packers president and CEO Mark Murphy, who is also a member of the NFL’s competition committee, more or less saying so last month.

Vincent said the NFL hopes to have a consensus on potential changes by the end of Wednesday that can be used by the competition committee to draft new kickoff rules that would be voted on during the NFL owners’ spring meeting May 21-23.