Friday, September 11, 2020

2020 NFL Reference Materials



Welcome to the 2020 NFL season... perhaps the most improbable and most uncertain of the 101 seasons so far. Here are some NFL reference materials that will answer almost all questions and settle most arguments.



(Bear with us while we figure out Google's moronic new formatting)

Week 1: Green Bay at Minnesota

Well, we had our doubts over the past several months about whether or not the NFL would be able to play during the coronavirus pandemic, but it looks as if we will have at least the first games of the season this weekend (Houston and Kansas City kicked things off tonight). Here’s to the league being able to make an entire season happen.

The areas marked in GREEN above will see the Packers vs. Vikings at Noon (CT) on FOX. The rest of the Week 1 games are also shown above and below.


Thursday, September 03, 2020

NFL to Provide Pre-Recorded Crowd Noise

More on “crowd noise” in stadiums for the 2020 season:

While the majority of NFL games will kick off next week in stadiums without fans, the league is doing its best to mimic the sound of a venue filled with spectators.

NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported Thursday that it will provide a loop of pre-recorded crowd noise specific to each team's stadium that must be played over the PA system in empty stadiums -- and partially filled stadiums, at least to start the season -- at 70 decibels starting at kickoff. NFL ops will monitor the audio throughout the game to make sure that the crowd noise does not go above or below the required decibel level.

Any person or club caught attempting to manipulate the league-curated audio will be subject to fines, suspensions or potential lost draft picks, Pelissero added.While the majority of NFL games will kick off next week in stadiums without fans, the league is doing its best to mimic the sound of a venue filled with spectators.

NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported Thursday that it will provide a loop of pre-recorded crowd noise specific to each team's stadium that must be played over the PA system in empty stadiums -- and partially filled stadiums, at least to start the season -- at 70 decibels starting at kickoff. NFL ops will monitor the audio throughout the game to make sure that the crowd noise does not go above or below the required decibel level.

Any person or club caught attempting to manipulate the league-curated audio will be subject to fines, suspensions or potential lost draft picks, Pelissero added.

— NFL Football Operations



Click to enlarge


Click to enlarge


Tuesday, September 01, 2020

2020 NFL Rulebook and Rules Changes


Since the 2020 season will soon be upon us, it is time to post the Official NFL Rulebook, as well as provide a listing of the new rules changes.


To download a PDF of the entire 2020 Official Playing Rules of the NFL, click here.

2020 NFL RULES CHANGES

DEFENSELESS PLAYERS ON PUNTS AND KICKOFFS
The Competition Committee voted to expand the rule that protects a player in a defenseless position to include a kickoff or punt returner who is attempting to field a kick in the air, but who has not had time to clearly become a runner. If the player can avoid or ward off impending contact, he is no longer defenseless.

GAME CLOCK START AFTER FOUL IN FOURTH QUARTER
Beginning in the 2020 season, if the offense commits a foul after the ball is made ready for play and causes the clock to stop before a snap during the fourth quarter or overtime, the game clock will start on the snap. Previously, if the clock was stopped for a foul before the five-minute mark of the fourth quarter, the clock would start on the referee’s signal.

REPLAY INITIATED BY REPLAY OFFICIAL
The Committee has made permanent that reviews of the following types of plays can only be initiated by the replay official, even if a foul on the play negates the ruling:

All try attempts

 All scoring plays

 All plays with an interception

 All plays with a fumble or backward pass either recovered by an opponent or that goes out of bounds through the end zone.

Monday, August 31, 2020

What Lambeau Field Will Sound Like in 2020


How the game will sound (in empty stadiums this year):

The Competition Committee will have to determine the decibel levels that can be used while games are being played, but rest assured that there will be some sort of low hum consistently inside the venues. The league doesn’t want to make it easy for teams to find patterns’ in opponents verbal signals and cadences. “There’s got to be an audible hum of some sort,” one GM told me. “There can’t be silence. There’s too much teams can learn from each other if there’s no noise and you hear everything they’re saying.”

On TV, the goal is to make Lions-Packers at Lambeau Field in 2020 in Week 2 sound similar to Lions-Packers at Lambeau in Week 6 last year. “We’ve hired an audio engineer in every market. Of course, it’s one of those things you never expect to have to do, but the pandemic has forced us to innovate. And NFL Films is not only great at the pictures—they’re great at collecting authentic audio.” In each venue, the audio engineers will make the sound available to TV crews. A first down by the home team may generate a modest cheer, a takeaway a bigger cheer, and a touchdown a bigger one than either—and a turnover a groan, or whatever a groan sounds like. The audio will be taken from actual plays in that stadium from the last four seasons.

— Peter King’s (NBC) “Football Morning in America” column, August 31, 2020

Friday, August 28, 2020

2019-2020 Green Bay Packers Annual Report


In this lull before the 2020 season starts, we thought we’d share the Green Bay Packers’ 2019-2020 Annual Report. Before the shareholders meeting in July each year, the team releases its financial data to the media, but there’s much more information here on all of the aspects of the organization. If you own one or more shares of Packers stock, you can receive the annual report each year by request.

























Monday, August 24, 2020

More “Expert” Opinions


We’re back with a couple more NFL preview issues where the experts tell us how they predict the NFL season will play out — providing we go a whole season. The first publication went with a panel of seven writers, so we compiled them into a consensus:

USA TODAY SPORTS NFL PREVIEW

NFC North Division Standings:
Green Bay Packers (a unanimous vote)
Minnesota Vikings
Detroit Lions
Chicago Bears

NFC Division Winners:
Dallas, Green Bay, New Orleans, Seattle

NFC Wild Cards:
Tampa Bay, Philadelphia, Seattle

NFC Championship:
New Orleans over Seattle

AFC Division Winners:
Buffalo, Baltimore, Kansas City, Indianapolis, 

AFC Wild Cards:
Pittsburgh, Tennessee, New England

AFC Championship:
Baltimore over Kansas City

Super Bowl LIV:
Kansas City over Seattle



SPORTS ILLUSTRATED NFL PREVIEW

NFC North Division Standings:
Green Bay Packers
Minnesota Vikings
Detroit Lions
Chicago Bears

NFC Division Winners:
New Orleans, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Green Bay 

NFC Wild Cards:
Atlanta, Dallas, Los Angeles Rams

NFC Championship:
New Orleans over Philadelphia

AFC Division Winners:
Kansas City, Baltimore, New England, Indianapolis, 

AFC Wild Cards:
Buffalo, Tennessee, Pittsburgh

AFC Championship:
Baltimore over Kansas City

Super Bowl LIV:
Baltimore over New Orleans

Monday, August 17, 2020

Camp is Underway — So We Hear (Part 2)


If the press is considered “the fourth estate,” then the rest of us unprofessionals that cover the Green Bay Packers online must be the sixth or seventh estate. Regardless, we were over at Ray Nitschke Field this morning before practice started. Here we see the the gate outside the Don Hutson Center where media and V.I.P. guests enter.


The very few people (other than those employed by the Packers) who get to watch them practice in 2020 enter Ray Nitschke Field through this gate.


Practice for everyone else looks like this.


Those with credentials also enter through the northernmost Ray Nitschke Field bleachers gate.


A glimpse of the hidden realm.


But wait... a security breach allows a view of the field before practice starts.


The sad part of the coronavirus as it relates to annual visitors to Packers Training Camp.


Instead of riding bikes, some Packers players park by the Green Bay Packers Turf Department.


We’ve not noticed this before since the resurfacing of Clark Hinkle Field— what looks like the Lambeau Field SISGrass Hybrid turf on the left and total synthetic turf on the right.


Looking at Lambeau Field across Clark Hinkle Field which the Packers will utilize for in-season practices, at which point the fences will be covered by tarps to discourage spying.

Sunday, August 16, 2020

Camp Is Underway — So We Hear...


Took a walk today around the stadium area that would normally be buzzing with thousands of Packers fans watching practice, excited about a new season.


Something very new in the last month is the addition of mesh fence covering that obstructs views of the players’ parking area. The only way this could be COVID-19 related is if it is designed to keep fans from congregating around when players are near. That mesh is not going to stop any germs.


The temporary(?) new trailer by the players’ locker room entrance that we assume is virus-related has banners which read “DO YOUR PART. PROTECT YOURSELF. PROTECT YOUR TEAM. MUST WEAR FACE COVERING TO ENTER.”


Generators for the trailer, and players’ vehicles beyond that.


Four staffers hanging around the players’ locker room entrance. We did not approach because we did not want to be asked to leave.


NO kids with bikes. NO fans. NO players. Training Camp 2020.


Players entering their parking lot via the tunnel which goes under the Oneida Nation Gate.


Players being checked for temperature, virus test swabbing, and whatever.


Very few people in the Packers Pro Shop or around the stadium Atrium.


Normally, we’d be posting photos from practice and all activities around the beginning of Training Camp. Hopefully, next year. And hopefully, we’ll have a season this year.