Quarterbacks special treatment - The Football Tailgate
I don't understand the individualized and special treatment of quarterbacks for a lot of reasons ... but here it is for the most reasonable ones.

First things first, I understand (and so should you) that in a quarterback driven league, EVERY owner wants the offensive scores to be higher. NO one wants to watch an ugly offense, and no owner wants to watch their 15 to 20 million investment (per year) go down to a major injury. 

Don't believe me? When Brady went down to a hit below the knee (which Palmer also suffered only a few years ago, by the way) the owners voted in the new rule that you can't pursue the quarterback when you are on the ground. They don't want the QB getting hurt.

Also, as a side note, who would you rather watch run their team's offense? Kerry Collins or Vince Young? Charlie Batch or Ben Roethlisberger? Jake Delhomme or Colt McCoy? Brett Favre or Joe Webb? ... I can keep going on (no really, I can ... Sanchez/Clemens, Henne/Pennington, Manning/Painter, Vick/Kolb, Rodgers/Flynn ... good enough yet?)

Here's where I don't understand the rules. You cannot hit a quarterback (from my understanding) in the helmet .. I have heard when he is past the line of scrimmage he is considered a "runner" and therefore you should be able to hit him in the helmet then right? Well what defines a quarterback then? If Brad Smith, Ronnie Brown, Josh Cribbs or Darren Sproles take a 'wildcat' snap, aren't they the quarterback for the play?

Does this mean they aren't allowed to get hit as well? It wouldn't be fair to suggest that a running back shouldn't be allowed to be hit the same as a quarterback, becuase that would kill a defensemen. Imagine trying to 'lay the wood' on a wildcat quarterback (becuase he took the snap, he is the quarterback for the play...) who is clearly trying to run up the middle, but LITERALLY at the last second he pulls up as if he were going to try a "Tim-Tebow-esque" jump pass (see Tebow's Florida highlights). That would have to be a penalty by the rules if the "quarterback" were hit in the helmet or was tackled by a played who was on the ground and was still going for the tackle (the Brady Rule). 

Also imagine that a quarterback is lined up at the wide receiver position on a wildcat formation, and on an "end around" (where the WR who is played in this case by the QB sweeps behind) the ball is flipped to the QB and he throws it downfield. You should be able to hit him as hard as you want ... he isn't the quarterback for that play because he didn't take the snap. 

BUT the league couldn't conform to these rules because it would rob the game and get their quarterbacks killed. So what this means to me is that the league (quite simply) protects the star quarterbacks over others. It very well could be favoritism and it happens all the time.

I have seen plays recently where Peyton Manning, Tom Brady or Joe Flacco have been grabbed (and not even wrapped up) but the plays have been whistled dead. Whereas I have also seen in just the last few weeks that Ben Roethlisberger, Mark Sanchez, and Mike Vick were grabbed and being pulled down ... but they were able to escape or at least throw the ball away before they hit the ground. Like it or not (because it might have an advantage AND a disadvantage for either case) ... the rules aren't the same for every quarterback. That needs to stop. 

Overall I may have gotten a little off subject (or touched on a few somewhat related items), but that's ok. The point is that with the NFL currently trying to enforce the currently existing safety rules for players, they also need to realize that they need to enforce them ...equally. That's not to suggest that some players haven't developed a reputation amongst officials of being dirty players, but what it does mean is don't give them the chance to see that preferential treatment (either in a positive or negative way). If a guy commits a helmet to helmet ... cool. PUNISH THEM... I DONT CARE!  but don't just call it on some players (or on some plays) but then not call it on others. If a QB is wrapped up and you want to whistle it dead... fine... but don't let some have all day until they hit the ground, but make another suffer a 9 yard sack because he was touched! So many people are so concerned with the rules, and that is a valid point. But regardless of what the rules are, you need to enforce them equally amongst all players. 

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