NFL owners voted Tuesday to officially revamp kickoffs for the upcoming season.
The changes will limit full-speed collisions, with adjustments made in conjunction with special teams coaches and members of the league’s competition committee in New York earlier this month.
With the new rules, players on the kicking team cannot line up more than one yard from the point of the kickoff. The previous rule allowed players to line up five yards back.
The wedge block has been eliminated. Only players who line up between their own 40 and opponents’ 45-yard line can put together double-team blocks.
Also, until the ball is touched or hits the ground, no player on the receiving team may cross the restraining line (typically its 45) or initiate a block.
When the ball hits the end zone, it’s immediately ruled a touchback.
On Tuesday, owners also expanded reviewable plays to include disqualification of players.