Manufacturers try to halt safety issues from longer goalposts

During the NFL Annual Meeting last week, among the rules passed was a proposal by the New England Patriots to make the goalposts five feet higher. The idea was to make it easier to determine borderline field goals.

However, the Arizona Republic reported that it's not that easy for goal post manufacturers to add five more feet to the posts to make the 35 feet tall in time for the upcoming season. And the goalpost makers say it could be a player safety issue.

The factors fall into the player safety category. They might be too big and topple over onto players at an inopportune time or heavy winds could cause them to sway.

The president of Gilman Gear, which makes goalposts for 12 NFL stadiums, said most of them will have to be replaced.

Gilman said the NFL asked him to also determine the costs of a 15-foot increase in the goalposts, which was determined to be too expensive. But he said his company will have to reconfigure its painting for the posts, which is 30 feet long, and looking at increased shipping costs because not many truckers can take such a 35-foot load.

-- Bill Bradley, contributing editor

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