Goodell discusses replay, playoff format in 'state of the NFL' chat

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell speaks as fake snow falls during a news conference Friday ahead of the Super Bowl in New York.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell speaks as fake snow falls during a news conference Friday ahead of the Super Bowl in New York.
Photo by REUTERS
| Friday, Jan. 31, 2014, 7:12 p.m.

NEW YORK — The Super Bowl probably isn't headed to New York again in the near future, but instant replay reviews soon might be.

And two more teams might be packing their bags for the playoffs, no matter the destination. Even if it's a season too late for the Steelers.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell hinted Friday the league might adopt a form of centralized instant replay review, much like the NHL has. He was quick to emphasize the system wouldn't copy hockey's.

“We believe that we might be able to achieve more consistency when we bring the instant replay with us — more of a centralized version and decision-making process — and that's something the competition committee is going to consider over the next two months and then come back to a recommendation for a membership,” Goodell said.

The Competition Committee meets in Orlando, Fla., during the league owners meetings in March. Steelers president Art Rooney recently suggested he would favor a change that resulted in more accurate rulings but also cut the time for reviews.

Goodell also favors expanding the playoffs from 12 to 14 teams, a move that would increase revenues by creating more national TV games. Goodell said it would lead to more late-season interest in multiple cities because more teams would be competing for playoff spots.

The Steelers would have made the playoffs this season as the No. 7-seeded team in the AFC if there had been expanded playoffs.

Goodell said the league will continue evaluating whether medical marijuana could benefit injured players — including those with head injuries — although he doesn't foresee a relaxing of the league's drug policy while marijuana “is still an illegal substance on a national basis. ... (But) we'll continue to follow the medicine.”

Goodell also said:

• No one should overreact to Rams owner Stan Kroenke purchasing 60 acres of Los Angeles land, saying, “There are no plans, to my knowledge, of a stadium development.”

• “There's such a demand for Super Bowls right now, the number of cities that are going to get multiple Super Bowls at one time, I think, are incredibly limited.”

• There were “mistakes made by us, the NFL and our clubs” that led to Green Bay, Cincinnati and Indianapolis scrambling to sell out wild-card playoff games hours before they were held, and, as a result, “We have to use technology more efficiently.”

• The Redskins' name was viewed favorably by nine of 10 surveyed in a Native American community poll, but the league is “listening” to those who believe the name is disrespectful.

Alan Robinson is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at or via Twitter @arobinson_Trib.

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