Pro Bowl to let scoring team keep possession, face 4th down
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The Pro Bowl is adding a new twist that could reward teams for taking a risk.
The NFL announced Tuesday that its upcoming all-star game in Orlando will feature a rule change that allows a team to keep the ball after it scores. The scoring team can retain possession at its own 25-yard line and face a fourth-and-15 play. Pick up a first down, and the offense gets a new set of downs. Fail to gain 15 yards, and it’s a turnover on downs and good field position for the other conference.
The scoring team also could elect to give the opponent the ball at the opponent’s 25-yard line, much like a kickoff that results in a touchback.
The 2020 Pro Bowl also tweaked rules regarding pre-snap penalties.
It is no longer a a false start if a flexed, eligible receiver in a two-point stance flinches or picks up one foot as long as his other foot remains partially on the ground. He also must reset for a second before the snap. A receiver who fits this exception is not considered to be in motion.
It is a false start if all 11 offensive players are set for at a full second and any flexed, eligible receiver breaks his stance by picking up both feet.