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Rule change could make failed fourth downs reviewable by the booth, not coach’s challenge

Mike Florio and Chris Simms break down the various rule changes proposed by NFL teams, from a return of the third QB rule, to a fourth-and-20 onside kick alternative and more.

The Texans are proposing a new NFL rule that would add failed fourth downs to the list of plays that can only be reviewed by the replay assistant, and not by a coach’s challenge.

Currently replays are initiated from the booth on turnovers, scoring plays, in overtime and in the last two minutes of either half.

If the NFL adopts the Texans’ proposal an offensive team that goes for it on fourth down and is ruled short of the yard to gain would not be able to throw its challenge flag to have the play reviewed. Instead, the replay assistant in the stadium or the league’s officiating office would determine whether the play was close enough to call for a replay review.

According to the Texans’ proposal, the reason the team is proposing the play is “Competitive equity and pace of play.”

Like all rule changes, the Texans’ proposal would require a three-fourths majority of the league, or 24 teams, to vote in favor of it in order to be adopted.