NFL May Eliminate Extra Point

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell confirms possible change to scoring system

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David J. Phillip / AP

Baltimore Ravens kicker Justin Tucker makes a field goal against the San Francisco 49ers during the second half of the NFL Super Bowl XLVII football game in New Orleans, Feb. 3, 2013.

The extra point could be on its way to extinction if the National Football League goes through with a proposal to eliminate the age-old method of supplementing touchdowns in football games with a conversion.

The kicks have had a 99.1% percent rate in the NFL since 2004 and have become almost a foregone conclusion, Commissioner Roger Goodell told NFL.com.

“The extra point is almost automatic,” he said. “I believe we had five missed extra points this year out of 1,200 some-odd. So it’s a very small fraction of the play.”

Under the current rules, teams that have scored a touchdown may attempt an extra point by kicking the football through the goal posts, or they may try for a two-point conversion by running the ball. Goodell said a possible change (among several proposals) would involve giving a scoring team seven points for touchdowns, but also an option to attempt an eighth point through a run or pass — but going back to six if the attempt fails.

Goddell would not say if or when a decision would be made on any changes in the scoring system. “We’ll make some focus on this in the [NFL Competition] Committee and we’ll see where they come out.”

But change can happen. After decades of resistance, for example, the NFL adopted the two-point conversion in 1994.

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