NFL bans Oklahoma drills, players are outraged

In the now outlawed drill, running backs would have the ability to simulate contact with defensive players. Commisioner Goodell ultimately decided to ban the drill due to concerns over helmet to helmet contact, as seen with the Detroit Lions.

Photo credit to Pixabay.com

In the now outlawed drill, running backs would have the ability to simulate contact with defensive players. Commisioner Goodell ultimately decided to ban the drill due to concerns over helmet to helmet contact, as seen with the Detroit Lions.

Matthew Roman, Staff Writer

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Roger Goodell firmly believes in player safety for everyone in the NFL.  This led him to the questionable decision to ban Oklahoma Drills from training camp until late July.

Oklahoma drills have two variations, one where two players lie on their backs about 20 yards apart, one with the ball and one without, and upon the whistle, spring to their feet and the player without the ball tries to tackle the player with the ball while the guy with the ball attempts to avoid the tackle.  This helps defensive players with proper form tackling because it doesn’t really allow for helmet to helmet hits, which is what the Commissioner’s Office is trying to avoid, and teaches running backs to break and avoid tackles. These are very useful skills for the game of football. In the other variant, an offensive and defensive lineman are fighting for position while the running back attempts to get through using skill or power.

This drill is very helpful for offensive lineman because it is straight up blocking one lineman at a time which helps with the players form and footwork, and helps the running back as well because it teaches him how to get outside the tackles. It also helps defensive lineman because it gives him one on one chances to get through an offensive lineman and hit a runner, something that is very important for stopping the run when it counts in late December.  This is supposed to help protect the players because they won’t be getting hit as much for no reason, but football is a game full of hitting, and if the players don’t like it, quit.

College football hasn’t gotten these bans yet, but they could be next up on this list.  This would severely harm the game that has been beautiful for many Americans.

It’s man-on-man, lining up and whooping somebody’s ass. That’s what it comes down to,” South Carolina head coach Will Muschamp said.

He isn’t concerned about losing the ability to do Oklahoma drills. He didn’t even know what they were when he was asked about it.  

At WJ, Oklahoma drills haven’t been banned either.

“They are safe and very productive,” sophomore Brody Ramirez said.

As a quarterback, Ramirez may not participate in all of them, but because he’s a dual threat quarterback who likes having the ability to run, he uses them to avoid being tackled as easily when he decides to run on the field.

Roger Goodell thinks that he’s helping keep players safer, but in reality he’s just opening the door for more unsafe drills to be used during the offseason.

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