Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Replaying Controversial Issue Weaver, Coughlin in Favor of Rule in Different Form

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Replaying Controversial Issue Weaver, Coughlin in Favor of Rule in Different Form

Article excerpt

PALM DESERT, Calif. -- As the NFL owners convene here today for

their annual Winter Meetings, the key issue will be to replay --

once again -- the instant-replay debate.

Since the league voted out instant replay in 1992, the great

debate whether to bring it back in a new format has raged on.

Now, for the first time, there appears to be a groundswell for

replay to return.

Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver and coach Tom Coughlin are both in

favor of bringing back replay -- in some altered state.

"I'm in favor of it, but I'm in fa vor of a little more

expanded ver sion of the one that was offered last summer,"

said Coughlin, who is expected to arrive here today for the

meetings, which end Thursday. "It would be reassuring to have

instant replay."

The new proposal the league will vote on this week is similar

to the replay experiment the league conducted last preseason

during 10 nationally televised games, including the Jaguars'

preseason victory over San Francisco. Under that system,

coaches were allowed to challenge three kinds of calls, and were

given three challenges per half. The categories of plays for

review were end zone, sidelines and number of players on the

field.

The decision to reverse calls was made by the referees, after

viewing the plays on a television monitor brought out onto the

field.

"It's too narrow," said Weaver. "It has to be broader than the

system used in the preseason."

During the 10 preseason games, there were 13 calls challenged,

with three overturned. The length of time for the delay to

review the calls was 2:17, which is significant considering flow

of the game is important to many coaches -- especially Coughlin.

The Washington Redskins also have a proposal that would be

similar to the one used last summer, but also includes pass

interference and several other variables. The competition

committee also is going to recommend a plan that will be a

combination of the league's and the Redskins'. …

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