4th-and-15 Play To Replace Onside Kick At Pro Bowl

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The NFL will try out an alternative to the onside kick at this year's Pro Bowl: a fourth-and-15 play. The league announced the initiative in a statement on Tuesday.

Essentially, scoring teams will have an opportunity to convert a fourth-and-15 from their own 25-yard line to retain the ball. If they do not convert, the opposing team will take over on the dead-ball spot. 

The rule was proposed by the Denver Broncos this past offseason, but the league voted against it. Rule-change propositions must receive a supermajority among owners, 24 out of 32, to pass. 

With the rule's implementation at the Pro Bowl, there is still a chance that the legislation could be introduced for a vote sometime in the future.

Since the NFL disallowed running starts on onside kicks, its success rate has drastically declined. In 2017, 21% of kicks were converted. After the rule changed in 2018, that number declined to 8%. This season, it was 13%.

The NFL banned kickoffs from the Pro Bowl in 2015. After a scoring play, or to start the first and third quarters, teams can choose to either start the ball at their own 25-yard line or trigger this new fourth-and-15 rule.