NFL Bans Hip-Drop Tackle: Controversial Move Aims to Reduce Injury Rates

NFL prohibits hip-drop tackle despite NFLPA’s protests

After months of debate and controversy, the NFL has officially banned the hip-drop tackle following a vote at the spring owner’s meetings in Orlando, Florida. The news was confirmed by a source to Yahoo Sports just before the announcement was made.

The ban on the “swivel” version of the hip-drop tackle is aimed at reducing injury rates in the sport. Competition committee executive vice president Jeff Miller stated that it results in about 25 times higher rate of injury compared to a typical tackle. There has been some confusion over what exactly constitutes a hip-drop tackle, but competition committee chairman Rich McKay played a video compilation of examples during media availability to clarify.

Prominent incidents like Patrick Mahomes’ injury against the Jaguars and Mark Andrews’ tackle have sparked discussions around the hip-drop tackle. The NFL plans to train officials to enforce the new rule by looking for three specific elements: grabbing the opponent, swiveling them, and unweighting them.

However, some players and coaches are not happy with the decision. The NFLPA released a statement ahead of the owners meetings opposing the proposal to ban the hip-drop tackle, citing concerns about confusion for players, coaches, officials, and fans. Players like Dolphins safety Jevon Holland and Vikings safety Josh Metellus were among the first to weigh in on the rule change, with others like J.J. Watt and Kenyan Drake joining later.

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