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Dan Quinn is comfortable with current NFL overtime rules

Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn speaks to

Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn speaks to reporters during the NFC Head Coaches Breakfast at the NFL annual meetings Wednesday, March 29, 2017, in Phoenix. Credit: AP / Ross D. Franklin

PHOENIX — As the NFL explores tinkering with overtime rules, one of the possibilities is changing the format so that each team gets a chance to possess the ball. Similar, almost, to the college overtime system. But there is one surprising proponent of keeping things just the way they are.

“You would think I would say ‘100 percent,’” Falcons coach Dan Quinn said on Wednesday at the NFL’s annual meeting in Phoenix, just three months after his Falcons lost Super Bowl LI to the Patriots in overtime without ever taking an offensive snap in the extra period. “But honestly when I look back at it, we had our opportunities to stop them too. As it goes through that, I’m comfortable with how it is now.”

There was a proposal at these meetings to change overtime in the regular season from 15 minutes to 10. That proposal was tabled. And it would not have affected the Super Bowl, which like all postseason games must be played until there is a winner whether that is one drive in overtime like the Patriots had or in double-overtime which has happened only six times.

The last time the NFL changed its overtime rules was in 2012, when it went from sudden death to the current system where teams can win with a touchdown on their first possession, but if they score a field goal the opposing team gets a chance to score.

“I like how it is now where you have a chance if you hold them to a field goal to get it,” said Quinn, who has a defensive background. “I’m comfortable with the rule now where if you stop them you get your opportunity, and it’s up to us to stop them. I’m cool with how the format is right now.”

Even after losing the Super Bowl in such fashion?

“I’ve been on the other end of it where it’s worked out good too,” he said.

But never in February.


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