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NFL Competition Committee Not Putting Pass Interference Replay Rule Up for Vote to Owners

The NFL's competition committee will not put the pass interference replay rule vote to owners. 

On Friday, the NFL released the list of rule proposals that clubs will vote on during upcoming owners meetings. The pass interference rule was not among them, making it possible that the league to abandon the rule and return to what was in place prior to the 2019 season.

Pass interference review was only implemented last season for a one-year trial. Owners approved of the experiment with a 31–1 vote before they could decide to extend, eliminate or amend the rule for 2020. 

NFL teams, however, were overwhelmingly opposed to keeping the rule that made pass interference reviewable by instant replay, according to results from a recent offseason survey conducted by the league's competition committee.

Per the NFL Network's Judy Battista, of the 29 teams that were asked about making the rule permanent, only eight said yes, while 21 said no. Three did not respond. 

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The replay was put in place after the controversial no-call between the Los Angeles Rams and the New Orleans Saints in the 2018 NFC Championship game. No penalty was given for defensive pass interference when Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman clearly hit Saints wide receiver Tommylee Lewis on a fourth-quarter play.

For the 2019 season, coaches were able to challenge pass interference calls or no-calls up until the two-minute warning of each half. In those final two minutes of each half and overtime, on-site replay officials would be the ones to determine whether or not a game should stop to review pass interference like other reviewable plays.

One of the proposals that will be discussed, however, is "to amend Rule 4, Section 3, Article 2, to prevent teams from manipulating the game clock by committing multiple dead-ball fouls while the clock is running." 

Such a change would eliminate clock loopholes such as the one used by the Titans in their Wild Card weekend win over the Patriots. 

All new proposals must be approved by 75 percent (24) of the owners.